< Upheaval: A little pink Grinch

Sunday, November 05, 2006

A little pink Grinch

I hope I don't step on your toes. I really hope I don't offend you. Cause I like you!

I am wearing a sports bra that has a pink ribbon on it. That is understandable, because of the purpose of a bra, and the meaning of a pink ribbon. But you know what? Pink ribbons are on everything. EH. VREE. THANG.

Yogurt, tee-shirts, shampoo, tennis shoes, cosmetics, electronic sudoku, cell phone covers, i-Pod cases, spatulas, towels, brownie mix, and about a million other products.

At what point do we stop calling this "awareness" and start calling it "exploitation?" Are manufacturers using the pink ribbon to boost their image and increase sales? Or do the makers of my sudoku game REALLY care about breast cancer? So what if they donate a minute percentage to The Cure? If they were truly concerned, I bet they could scrape together a little more than the measly one percent or so that actually goes to charity.

I hate to be a Negative Nelly, but gosh, I am really tired of seeing it. And I am sure other people are, too. It is one thing to purchase a product that promises endorsement of something you would like to support. It is another to become so jaded to the sight of a pink ribbon that it doesn't even move you to think about the meaning behind it.

Another thing that bugs me is that it seems so POLITICAL and MARKET-RESEARCHED. Of course there is not a huge explosion of things with yellow ribbons. Or AIDS awareness. Or support for Planned Parenthood. Those things are too edgy.

Breast cancer is safe: Look at us! With our pink ribbons! We are involved and concerned. We want to make a difference! We want to stand for something, but we don't really want to stand OUT. So just buy our cute pink things, and you can feel like you have done something.

I guess I seem really critical about a movement that is truly raising awareness of a terrible disease. I really am sorry.

7 Comments:

Blogger Sharkey said...

Don't be sorry. I've thought the same thing many times. As you can imagine, I have a vested interest in finding a cure for this terrible disease. But hello, Kitchen Aid? Don't expect me to buy a pink mixer.

I think it is marketing exploitation, and I won't buy an item on the basis of its pink status. However, if it's something I'm planning to buy anyway, and it's not an obvious breast cancer thing (or if it's something consumable like yogurt), I will sometimes choose the pink product over the non-pink product.

So yes, it irritates me. And yes, the marketing strategy works on me. Can you tell I'm a little conflicted about this?

9:21 PM  
Blogger Amanda Sue said...

sharkey - i was on the edge of my seat to read what you would have to say! thanks for giving me a little validation for my opinion. your thoughts matter greatly to me and i would never want to offend you over something like this, which, in the scheme of things, is pretty insignificant.

10:00 PM  
Blogger YankeeAmanda said...

A-freaking-men!

10:34 PM  
Blogger Jennboree said...

Very true. But if you don't feel comfortable with your PINK Sudoku game, you can certainly give it back *bwahahaha* Daniel might be grateful :P

Yeah, the breast cancer awareness thing is over the top. Everyone is making money on it and not nearly enough of the proceeds go to actual research. Most line the pockets of the companies exploiting the cause.

Giving to the actual Susan B. Komen foundation would be far more effective...obviously. But then, pink IS fun to buy!

8:03 AM  
Blogger Sharkey said...

You mentioned AIDS awareness . . . I think that explosion is coming next--have you seen the Gap campaign for red? Today Oprah went shopping with Bono--they got red shirts from Gap, and then they went to the Apple store for some red iPods.

Red is the new pink.

10:58 PM  
Blogger Amanda Sue said...

i hate to be critical, once again, but i think their campaign is aimed at AIDS in africa.

what? we have AIDS here too! and by focusing on the issue in other countries, our own issue gets shoved further under the rug.

that is another post for another day.

*sigh* so much to do!

6:29 AM  
Blogger Jennboree said...

Yeah, we have AIDS here, but we also have meds for those afflicted. That's the problem in Africa. The government doesn't or can't take care of its people, so responsible countries like us who want to remain a super power have to.

Politics ALWAYS comes into play.

8:06 AM  

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