After I made my blog “pink” for Breast Awareness Month, I received a surprising email from someone who is against the whole concept of “awareness” month. It seems as if there are quite a few people out there who think corporations are using their support of breast cancer for their own profit and brand awareness. Are yogurt brands really interested in breast cancer or are they just marketing to women?
From the blog I Blame the Patriarchy:
But where’s the activism? The ostensible focus of all this pseudo-philanthropic pink jockeying is a kind of nebulous breast cancer ‘awareness’, rather than any serious effort at prevention or investigation into what actually causes breast cancer in the first place. Furthermore, once all this ‘awareness’ has produced, via mammography outreach programs or self-exam propaganda (both masquerading as ‘prevention’), a positive diagnosis, there’s not any great push to secure treatment for underserved women.
I don’t agree with this type of reasoning. A lot of money is going to good use and all this corporate sponsorship is surely helping. Or is it?
Politicians support virtually unopposable ‘bipartisan’ breast cancer funding initiatives as directed by behemoths like the massively influential and reactionary Komen Foundation and come out smelling like a rose. The rank and file, conditioned by now to believe that there’s no problem shopping can’t solve, are invited to feel virtuous and altruistic whenever they buy a Yoplait yogurt or a pink KitchenAid mixer.
My question for these naysayers: would it be better if it were the other way — and there was no corporate sponsorship? And isn’t this exactly what progressives have been asking for — for corporations to be more responsive to their consumers? You think supermarkets (and Walmart) are completely altruistic because they have started to carry organic foods? Or Starbucks carrying coffee from certain countries? Of course they hope to make profits while doing some “good.”
But, I thank you, e-mailer, for opening my eyes to an interesting topic.
This mix of promotion and politics was on my mind last night when I thought about going to the movies by myself. With Sophia in New York for October, I thought about finding the movie with the most sex in it.
I read about Shortbus, a film by the director of “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” which is supposed filled with actors having real-life sex. Perfect!
Now, once upon a time, moviegoers used to go to pornographic movies because they were horny or wanted to have some fun. Things are different today. You buy Yoplait yogurt because they support breast cancer awareness. And you go to a porno movie because it is anti-Bush. I read this before heading out the door —
A US film featuring actors performing real sex is a “call to arms” against President George W. Bush, the director told journalists at the Cannes film festival.
“Shortbus,” an explicit, largely improvised arthouse flick is a direct provocation, director John Cameron Mitchell admitted.
“It’s a little bit of a cri de coeur to us, a little bit of a call to arms” against the prevailing conservatism, he told a media conference, adding that his country was living in “the era of Bush, which is about clamping down, being scared.”
The 43-year-old, whose previous work was “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” about a transsexual rock singer, said the film was his own small act of defiance against Bush.
“If you can’t do elections you might as well do erections,” he said.
Oh, I see. So, now the Whole Foods crowd, doesn’t have to feel guilty about going to see a SEX movie. They are going to see an anti-Bush film. In fact, by going to see to this movie — it’s a vote against the administration.
Yogurt as a breast cancer awareness tool. Dislike of George Bush as a reason to see people f***ing.
I decided against going to the movies. I went to a local juice bar wearing my pink breast cancer bracelet, met a cute girl, and asked her if she wanted to come back to my place to “protest the policies of the current administration.”
A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month: Survivor: Santa Fe