There is a lot of backlash to the “pinking” of October. I understand it. Actually, I am getting a little tired of everything being pink; items being sold with a pink ribbon on them, and companies jumping in with pink promotions all in the name of “awareness.” However, I am not anti-pink. Nor am I anti-pink ribbon.I appreciate the celebrities who advertise for a company promoting a pink item because I think they truly care. I just hope they’ve done their homework and know exactly how much money is going to the charity of choice. And how much that charity actually does for breast cancer research; both for prevention and a cure. Turning our disease into a money-making opportunity while pretending to care has got to stop. And companies that use their usual marketing campaigns but simply pink-wash the ad and say that it is “in support of” breast cancer awareness only trivializes the reality that is breast cancer. And it is hurtful to those who are dying of breast cancer. This is what is making everyone so angry.
I understand the anger, but I am not going to give up my pink ribbon during October. I am going to continue to wear my pink ribbon pin because for me the pin is a symbol and a badge of honor. It is also an open invitation. Wearing the pin lets people know that I support the cause that is breast cancer. When someone sees the ribbon they might choose to ask me why I wear the ribbon. It happens. The ribbon also provides an opportunity for someone to share, without my being intrusive.
I am not a brave person but my pink ribbon says, “Yes, we can talk about breast cancer if you’d like.” And so I will continue to wear it as a survivor, in support of others with the disease, and as an opportunity for conversation.