Colour Blind for a Cause…

June 30th, 2011

There are about 20 or more different awareness colour ribbons, each representing a different type of cancer (ex. the most familiar colour that people recognize is pink for breast cancer). Around the time that I was going through treatments, one day I was surfing the net and landed on a chat room message board that consisted of a lot of people diagnosed and or living with cancer. I remember reading through most of the postings and the majority came from people that seemed angry that their “colour” (representing the type of cancer they have), was not given its fair share of exposure, funding and recognition as some other ones.

Being a cancer patient myself at the time and reading through these complaints from a majority of people; I had a mixed reaction towards this. The colour representing my cancer, lymphoma, is lime green. However, I did not feel that the type of cancer that I had was any more important than that of someone elses. The way I saw and continue to see it is that even though each cancer patient may be diagnosed with a different type of cancer, they share more similarities together than their differences. They can share similarities in their pain, symptoms resulting from their chemo and radiation therapies notably hair loss, nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue to name a few. Knowing that there are so many things connecting cancer patients and their similar struggle it seemed to make no sense to me to have this all separated by a simple ribbon and colour.

I then felt and continue to feel that we should live in a time when every person comes together and the money raised for cancer funding gets fairly distributed to each cause. Because each cause is equally as important as the next one. We need to focus less on separating patients and funding by colour and create awareness for all. I do not mean to come across as anti-ribbon, it’s just the opposite. If colours are used to create awareness for causes that’s fine as long as there is no separation. No hierarchy amongst them. That’s why that day I became colour blind. I decided that I would support all causes.

5 Responses to “Colour Blind for a Cause…”

  1. I agree totally on that. as long as people are in fact taught that ALL cancers are equally deadly and need some funds for fighting them, is the only matter here. Any disease that our killing our people, need funding for the scientist to find a cure for.

  2. sembhi@gmail.com says:

    I agree 100%. Each person’s story and case is unique and important in it’s own way and should not be compared to anyone else. Every life is worth something.

  3. Bhagwant Singh says:

    Good article Paul and I agree with you totally. We must fight collectively for the cause of Cancer without labeling the different names to it. Collectively we must contribute to fight with this disease called Cancer. It is not important what is the name it is called with. I will support totally for the cause you have chosen.

  4. CoOlIe says:

    Get me a t-shirt!!!! Love it and what it stands for!

  5. SS says:

    I am totally in agreement that people must be aware of the greater good rather than their own sole recovery. Funding for Cancer research continues to be an important topic. I would like to offer a different perspective, with all due respect. Not all Cancer is created equally. Some are in remission (“curable”) and some are difficult to remit (“incurable”) at the moment. The goal is certainly to offer a larger total pie of funding for global research but the reality is the more common and more lethal a condition the more aggressive and more pressing the need for therapies are. At the risk of seeming insensitive, if the condition is rare it is very difficult to assess what is “fairly distributed”. Since I am the only one of me that there is, it will always seem unfair that “my” cause doesn’t get the same funding as “yours” but the unfortunate truth is that there is not an infinite fund of resources and since common things happen commonly, those are the causes that will receive the majority of the attention and funding. I believe this is where the misguided notion of cancer seperatism was born.

    If you look at this list: http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/NCI/research-funding

    Common causes receive the bulk of the funding. Is this considered unfair distribution? It depends on your perspective. In my mind, the push should be to grow the pie as large as possible as HP said but we must be careful to understand that if a certain condition gets 1/8th of the pie now, they will likely still get the same portion of a larger one.

    At the end of the day, We cancertainly meet our “personal” needs by helping everyone.

RSS feed for comments on this post. And trackBack URL.

Leave a Reply