Monday, February 6, 2012

My dinner with Susan

Remember when you were in school and the teacher asked you to pick one person dead or alive from any time in history to have dinner with, to talk to, to gain words of wisdom from?  I do.  I can't recall who I picked, but family members aside (yes Dad, you would be first, as long as dinner would include your delicious goulash)  I would pick Susan Komen to sit down and have dinner with.

"What???"  You are thinking...

"All the amazing people throughout history and you pick her?"

I am a bit of a history buff, I love the stories of how our country was founded, hey I grew up in one of the 13 original colonies, can't help that, and the whole story of Pearl Harbor intrigues me, but yes even with the chance of having dinner with John Adams or George Washington, I pick Susan G. Komen.

As any cancer survivor knows her battle and unfortunate death because of cancer started the Susan G. Komen foundation.

Nancy Brinker.

Susan Komen's sister.

Her name instills anger in many cancer survivors, because of the recent uproar over "pinkwashing", something I had written about in 2008 on the stupid cancer blog.

and then again dear dear Nancy and her Komen foundation created Promise Me perfume, ironically which could cause cancer, and most of us have issues with strong fragrances while going through chemo and well beyond that.

And now pulling funding from planned parenthood, which it seems to be a political move, and many assume that the poor and un and underinsured will not be able to get mammograms.

Then panic sets in.

Now lets be honest, Planned Parenthood isn't the only place women can get mammograms or cancer information. There is no need to press the panic button.

Komen however did press that panic button and decided to rescind their decision on  funding planned parenthood

Dinner time.

I can imagine Susan and I sitting down to dinner.

I think the first thing I would show her is the Komen website, show her where it says about Susan, which is little more than a glossed over story about Nancy.

Tell her that even though her sister has taken the pink ribbon and tried to sue other organizations for using it, as well as suing other organizations who use for the cure as if breast cancer is the only cancer we want cured.

Let her know that it was in fact Evelyn Lauder who created the pink ribbon campaign, and the Estee Lauder foundation has not tried to sue other organizations for use of the pink ribbon.

By this time I can imagine Susan is silent.  Wondering how this all has happened.  How an organization that was founded through, what I am sure was love, has become so large, so hated by many, including the very cancer survivors the organization was founded for.

I wish I could actually have this dinner, have this conversation. 

Wonder what she would say that her sister can't see the cancer awareness forest for the pink trees? 

Ask her how putting a pink ribbon on friskies or alcohol furthers research and awareness.

But I can't

I can only wonder how her sister Nancy became so far removed from what she started

for Susan.

Check out my podcast The Cancer Warrior on Available on demand and also available on Itunes. 

1 comment:

  1. Very nice. Evelyn Lauder, ironically, died of ovarian cancer, which is, of course, linked to breast cancer in many cases. Something the Komen Foundation won't discuss....