I got an e-mail yesterday morning, telling me to post my bra color into my Facebook status as a way to raise "awareness" for breast cancer. I use quotes because I didn't participate because I couldn't see how calling attention to my bra without actually including any information about breast cancer would raise awareness of it. I mean, posting my bra color with a link to the Susan G. Komen foundation website or suchlike would raise awareness. But just my bra color would raise awareness of, well, my bra.
In my web meanderings today, I found people who agreed with me for more or less the same reasons, and I was prepared to pretty much forget it as another stupid Facebook thing. And then I found a post by a breast cancer survivor explaining why it was a colossally insensitive to breast cancer survivors, the people it was ostensibly trying to help:
"Other cancer survivors joined in, telling me that they felt left out too. After all, this was ostensibly an effort to raise awareness of breast cancer — but one in which breast cancer survivors themselves could not participate, and were reminded (as if we needed a reminder) that we didn’t need bras anymore, that most basic undergarment of women everywhere, that symbol of sexuality, for the simple reason that we had already sacrificed our breasts in a hail mary attempt to keep the rest of our bodies from dying of cancer."
I know it's late to be posting this, since that meme was so yesterday. But if you were just getting the e-mail today, or didn't have time to post yesterday and were going to today, please don't. And maybe this should serve as a cautionary tale about how when well-meaning people try to help a cause, they should check with the people actually affected by it to find out if it would actually be helpful.