Bracelets raise awareness for many causes

By on February 16, 2005

Letter to the editor:

Wow! That is the only word I can say to describe the load of crap I have just read. I read The Chronicle every week, and thoroughly enjoy the articles. I also really like the opinions section. However, this week Jeff Blanchet wrote an article (“Wear a watch instead”) which was completely insensitive, unresearched and out of line! I understand that in his article he was trying to push the fact that he wasn’t insensitive by writing things like, “I support the idea of donating money to those in need…”, like that will excuse him for the outragous alligations [sic] he has written.

The bracelets started with Lance Armstrong’s Live Strong bracelet. It was a great idea for a way to get donations and make an impact. It even caused other charitable organizations to do the same. I have two bracelets; yellow because yes, I do know someone who has died of cancer, several in fact, and some who are still suffering with it today! And a purple one for cystic fibrosis, because one of my closest friend has it.

Unlike what Jeff seems to think, I do not wear them to be trendy, but to promote awareness for the causes that many people may over look if they do not know someone in their lives with it. breast cancer, cystic fibrosis, bone marrow transplants, juvenile diabetes; these are all serious problems that many people are uneducated about. I myself did not realize how serious the need for bone marrow transplants were until I saw someone with a blue bracelet and asked them about it!

Personally, I do not know of anyone who feels that giving a dollar for a “cheesy, rubber bracelet” (as Jeff put it) is being extremely generous, and I am sure that people are still donating anonymous checks to charitable organizations and getting nothing in return. Like I said earlier, these bracelets are a way to promote awareness, not necessarily to symbolize one’s generosity for donating a dollar.

By now most people know what the yellow bracelet stands for, but I still have many people ask me, “What is the purple bracelet for?” That is when I educate them on cystic fibrosis and how serious it is.

Another factor that Jeff overlooked is that not every red bracelet is supporting the Red Sox. I agree that these bracelets shouldn’t be to support one’s favorite team. However, there is another red bracelet which is for juvenile diabetes! I was the most outraged when he wrote, “Don’t we all know someone that died of cancer?” How insensitive are you? I’m sure a lot of people know someone who has died of cancer and that is what makes the bracelet that much more important, to show the necessity of research, time and money that needs to be given so that the cancer “epidemic” can end.

Also, obviously Jeff has never lost anyone close to him to cancer, because if he had he would know that no matter how many people share your grief it does not lessen the pain over a loved one. I wear my bracelets with pride and not to be “trendy.” Even if some people are doing it to be trendy that is one more dollar to that charity, and one more person who is more aware!


About Eileen Keating