Oct 06 2013

Pink road rage

Just saw a news bite about AAA, the ubiquitous roadside assistance company, painting an unspecified number of its tow trucks pink. For “awareness.”

Pink tow trucks. Fix-a-Flat for the Cure?

According to ABC News “Good Morning, America,” a grateful breast cancer “survivor”/ AAA employee remarked, “It’s comforting to know that the company I work for understands what I am going through and would support awareness initiatives in such a visible way.”

I suspect that this employee was a little confused, albeit understandably so. She, like many a middle class American, has been expertly brainwashed by Komen and Avon and Estee Lauder to mistake pink marketing for “caring.” What the AAA employee really meant was “It’s depressing to know that the company I work for understands that painting their tow trucks pink will get them noticed by ABC News, and would exploit my disease to get free national advertising.”

In case you missed it yesterday, I’m gonna plug Breast Cancer Action again. You know why? They don’t take donations from companies that profit from or cause cancer. As you might imagine, that makes their corporate money pool pretty tiny.

Tangentially, it will not surprise anyone to hear that the first comment on the ABC News article was posted by a cheesed-off dude. He was cheesed because a chick disease is getting all the attention on TV, as opposed to the cancer that afflicts “a gland up a guy’s butt,” which disease, he asserts woundedly, doesn’t even have a ribbon. Also, patriarchy doesn’t exist, and there’s no such thing as rape culture. His comment got a bunch of “Amen, bro”s from readers who recognize “the institutionalize demonization of men in our culture.” So it would seem that Komen hasn’t mesmerized everybody; the misogynist MRA dudes have still got it goin on!


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  1. Morag

    Just the other day I saw a bright pink tow truck (I live in Canada). It caught my eye, but I didn’t know, until now, the meaning of its pinkness. And just the other day, I was offered a free sample of Estee Lauder perfume while walking through a department store. I didn’t know about that company, either. Christ, it’s everywhere.

    Now I know. If I’m ever in a position to give financially, it won’t be to the pink ribbon campaign, but to the Breast Cancer Action organization. Because of what I have learned here, on this blog.

    Concerning the last blog post, there was a shocking comment there that made me gasp: “holy shit!” Engaging with trolls, I understand, is a no-no. However, comments such as that one–comments which are clearly intended to shame and silence a woman–deserve our censure and condemnation for the pain they may have caused Twisty, and any woman, who has undergone brutal breast cancer treatment and is telling the truth about it.

  2. au naturel

    I recently had an aunt diagnosed with breast cancer. The overall feeling that I get from watching commercials and reading anything on the web or in magazines is that cancer is random. It will get you, and there’s nothing you can do to stop it. Your own body will betray you, and that’s a fact. The doctor that did the surgery was young. When my aunt told her she only wanted the lump removed, the doctor rolled her eyes and tried to brow beat and shame my aunt into giving her carte blanche to cut off anything (her breast or two even) if she deemed it was needed. And I realized that’s how they are being trained now. They aren’t taught about alternatives or causes, but only that hacking and butchering will give you back your life. And when you suggest alternatives and they look at you as though you’ve lost your mind, it’s because they really think you have. Because they believe the terrible things they are being taught. I’m afraid for my aunt. She has refused all chemo and radiation and feels that if she were to consent to it, when it’s all over, she’ll wish she was dead anyway. She is choosing instead to radically change the way she lives in good ways. I hope it’s enough.

  3. quixote

    au naturel, how close does your aunt live to some top-flight cancer centers? If she can get to one, and if she can get an appointment, and if her insurance covers it, (and all the other ifs I’ve forgotten in this the land of the world’s best healthcare), it’d be a good idea for her to get some second opinions. Try to convince her if you can and if it’s something she can do.

    I really give her props for the healthy living effort, and that’s a good idea no matter what. But spontaneous remission of cancer is rare. It does happen, but it’s rare. Others here with more experience than I have set me straight where needed, but I can’t help feeling that the averages are on the side of the nasty treatments Twisty talks of and not Mother Nature.

  4. Twisty

    Hey Morag, I try to keep IBTP a troll-free zone. Before my hiatus, when I was getting 5000-7000 hits a day, this was a full-time job, and one of the reasons I went on the hiatus in the first place. Nowadays the blog’s only getting about 5000 hits a week, so it’s a bit easier, but every so often one squeaks by anyway. I appreciate everyone’s restraint when this happens; I know how difficult it is to ignore them.

    As for sociopath dudes who spend their Saturday nights writing hatey crap at cancer people, there are a lot of’em out there. Whenever I write one of these anti-Komen things they crawl out of their rotting logs and let me know definitively that they hope I die screaming. How do people get this warped? I would really like to know.

  5. Twisty

    @ au naturel y quixote: I’m no cancerspert, but it’s possible, depending on the type of cancer and how advanced it is, that a lumpectomy can take care of it. My personal opinion, which is of course worthless, is that after you’ve already got the cancer it’s probably a bit too late for the clean livin’ to have much effect. But there are a million variables. For example, my sister and I both have the same breast cancer mutation. I smoked and drank my youth away, she ran marathons. I got wild, she got married. I got cancer, she didn’t. Who the hell knows? It’s a crapshoot, because we have insufficient information.

    In any event, I can totally get behind the desire to avoid cancer treatment. It sucks shit through Hefty bags. In my case I remain debilitated from the lingering side effects. I sometimes wonder, if I had it to do over again, whether I would.

  6. au naturel

    @quixote – the surgery has been done and she wants nothing more to do with any medical professionals. There is probably more than a bit of denial on her part at this stage. Honestly, it’s impossible to say how it’ll play out at this point.

    @twisty – “It’s a crapshoot, because we have insufficient information.” You’ve absolutely nailed it. If there is a logged history of when the first identifiable cases were known, commonalities between cases (i.e.: exposure to toxins, foods, practices) no one was busting their butts to let her know about it. I mean why would they? As you’ve pointed out, cancer is a goldmine.

    Thank you ladies. You are the coolest of the cool.

  7. Morag

    Thanks for the background info, Twisty. I’ve been back-reading your huge IBTP archive, but, by reading the posts randomly, haven’t really got a clear picture of the history of traffic, hiatus, or trolls slipping through. It sounds, though, that going from 5,000-plus per day to 5,000 per week is has been a tremendous relief for you. Good.

    But, yeah, how DO the trolls get so warped? Well, we know the patriarchy has something, if not everything, to do with it. Entitlement/supremacy puts so many men, and a few women, on the conscience-impaired and sadistic spectrum, that the patriarchy should be the first place to look (if you can find it–ha!) for answers. Seems to me that the field of psychology/psychiatry, with its intense focus on the personal and immediate factors, and its love affair with brain chemicals, will mostly come up with only partial answers.

    I must say that these cancer-loving, pain-celebrating sociopaths who are bent on delivering assaults to your in-box bring out MY inner sociopath. Oh, the consequences I can dream up for them!

  8. Simply Sutton

    Not that anybody here cares (including me) but the up-the-butt men’s cancer does have a ribbon. As one might expect, it’s baby blue.

  9. Della

    Cancer is a crapshoot – abso-bloody-lutely!

    I have metastatic breast cancer (MBC), so no pink fluffy cure for me. I can’t tell you how heartily sick I and other MBCers get of the positive, sparkly, it’s-all-going-to-be-OK shite that is Pinktober. So it’s great when others stick the boot in too, makes us feel less isolated. Thanks.

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