Bracelets reduce fight against cancer to a
‘fad’

 

To the Daily:

I am a fan of Lance Armstrong. And cancer has touched my life
more closely than it has most others. Yet I do not wear a yellow
bracelet. This is not because I claim to be a nonconformist;
I’ll be sporting my North Face jacket this winter like
(almost) everyone else. I choose not to wear a yellow bracelet
because their pervasiveness symbolizes not just the desire to be
fashionable, but also society’s tendency to reduce paramount
causes into mere fads.

My intent is not to attack the Lance Armstrong
Foundation’s LiveStrong campaign. I believe it is a noble
one, and Alana Kuhn is right in applauding its success regardless
of donors’ motivations (Armstrong bracelets are a fad with a
cause, 10/15/04). However, while I may applaud the success of the
campaign, I do not universally applaud bracelet wearers. Many buy
bracelets with the fight against cancer as their motivation, but
few people will disagree with me that many others paid only for
bracelets, not for a cause. To take bracelet-wearing as evidence
that wearers “support a cause with their mouths and their
pocketbooks” attributes an honor to many who may be
undeserving.

While participating in the Breast Cancer Awareness Month Diag
event last week, I was taken aback by the number of LiveStrong
bracelet wearers avoiding our collection buckets. “How could
people who publicly declare their support for cancer fundraising
turn their backs?” I wondered. Then I remembered: This is
just a fad. Wearing a bracelet does not commit the wearer to
anything; wearing a bracelet is evidence only that the wearer is
hip to the latest fashion. While associating the fight against
cancer with trendy bracelets may increase profits, it devalues the
cause. It makes the cause seem trivial. The fight deserves support
regardless of whether it is fashionable.

Ross Jensen

LSA junior

 

Peskowitz should attack a less honorable
‘fad’

 

To the Daily:

In his article on Oct. 14, When (and why) will it end?, Zac
Peskowitz attacks the “fad” of wearing the Lance
Armstrong LiveStrong bracelets. It’s a $1 rubber bracelet
that has raised millions of dollars for cancer research. Not only
have they raised millions of dollars, these little yellow bracelets
have raised awareness about what is probably one of the most
uncontroversial charitable causes: cancer.

If Peskowitz is so against fads, I suggest he write an article
criticizing something that is not doing anyone any good. Perhaps he
could attack the very UGG boots he mentions in his article. Leave
the little rubber bracelet that is doing so much good alone. One of
Peskowitz’s main arguments against the bracelets is that they
may one day give off a “foul cloud of odor.” I doubt
that rubber bracelets will ever give off such an odor, but maybe it
would be good if they did. Then everyone who has been wearing a
bracelet can go out and buy another one, raising another $12
million dollars for cancer research. As for the celebs that
Peskowitz has noted have submitted to the “conformity”
of wearing the bracelets, I think it is amazing. These people could
go out and buy themselves diamond bracelets, but instead
they’re sporting yellow rubber in support of an important
cause. I personally do not care if the $1 for the bracelets comes
from John Kerry, Peskowitz or anyone else, or what their reasons
are for buying the bracelets. It is one more dollar going to fight
cancer.

I am very moved by the show of support the yellow bracelets have
created for cancer victims and survivors. Shame on you Peskowitz,
go pick on a fad that deserves it.

Stacy Dodd

LSA senior

The letter writer is the president of Students Against
Cancer.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.