Yesterday, I got a Facebook message from someone, which read follows:
Some fun is going on.... just write the color of your bra in your status. Just the color, nothing else. And send this on to ONLY girls no men .... It will be neat to see if this will spread the wings of cancer awareness. It will be fun to see how long it takes before the men will wonder why all the girls have a color in their status.. Haha
It pissed me off, for a number of reasons - the silliness, the sexism, the trivialization of cancer. It’s like junior high school or something. First of all, how the hell is this supposed to "spread the wings of cancer awareness"? If you see a status update that says "black", are you going to make the cognitive leap to cancer? I don't think so. Second, I'm irked by the men vs. girls thing in the text. The opposite of girl is boy. The opposite of men is women. Grown-ups are men and women (unless they’re ballet dancers, in which case they’re girls and boys – but that’s another day). Third, is this supposed to be about breast cancer? What about lung and prostate and pancreatic cancer? What about lymphoma and melanoma? Not sexy enough because lungs don't wear undergarments?
Susan (Why Mommy) weighed in with a post today – reminding us that women who’ve had double mastectomies don’t wear bras. In her post, she linked to a Newsweek blog post about this whole Facebook meme, in which the author points out "This isn't awareness or education; it's titillation". And Barbara Card Atkinson got all hot and bothered on Facebook – privately, to me, and publicly, where she said: "Instead of listing your bra color, why not send a donation to the cancer fighting foundation of your choice? Everyone *is* aware - so go make an actual difference!"
That’s it, people – we’re aware of cancer, we need ACTION, we don't need to know what color bra you are or aren't wearing.