As the Green Bay Packers were walloping the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday Night Football last night, the NFL’s “A Crucial Catch Day” campaign for breast cancer – which “is focused on the importance of annual screenings, especially for women who are 40 and older” – was on display at the stadium. Banners similar to this one appeared in the stadium. Some players wore pink gloves or other pink paraphernalia. It was the first game of October, the first of many more pink pigskin promotions to come throughout this month.
But the Breast Cancer Action group, well known for its “Think Before You Pink” campaign, calls the NFL campaign “a distraction.” The group names the NFL as part of “a six-point take-down of pink ribbon cause marketing and the broader culture of “pink” which expands BCAction’s long-standing commitment to addressing exploitation, corporate profiteering and hypocrisy in breast cancer fundraising. The six points, according to Breast Cancer Action, are:
There’s more in an article on Jezebel.com, “How the NFL’s breast cancer awareness campaign lies to women.”
If this kind of Pinktober pushback is new to you, be aware that there is a strong groundswell of opposition from many breast cancer advocates.
Always one of the most thoughtful is Gayle Sulik,PhD, who wrote on her PinkRibbonBlues.org blog, “Rethinking Pink: How This Work Started And Why It Continues.”
Another is Jody Schoger, who blogged about “True October,” explaining that the truth she sees in October is “the ground swell to bring metastatic breast cancer issues to light is here.”
Another, Elaine Schattner, wrote,”For This October: A New Kind of Awareness,” with specific suggestions about how the awareness focus might adjust to some of the realities of 2014.
National Breast Cancer Coalition president Fran Visco writes that “It is time for a different strategy. The annual explosion of ‘brightly colored consumer goods’ is not cutting it.”
Some things to think about as you watch NFL games or as you are pummeled with pink marketing anywhere you go this month.
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