Blog Post 7 – Breast Cancer Culture – Heba Malik

Breast cancer awareness is a huge subject nowadays in the media, especially that of American media. The mainstream breast cancer culture is a movement in which awareness is sought through many social media routes, news stations, or other forms of media that sensationalize the issue and bring massive support from the crows. The movement is designed to appeal to the largest amount of people in order to garner the most support and donations. Donations are the hugest aspect of this, because funding for research is constantly being sought out. This is common for all types of diseases and cancers; however, breast cancer is one of the biggest ones of them all. The telltale pink ribbon is a well-known sign of Breast Cancer Awareness, and it is always used as a hallmark of finding a cure. Unfortunately, Breast Cancer culture has put an emphasis upon finding a cure, while not putting as much of one upon finding preventive measures. I find this to be quite unfortunate, as prevention is the most important step towards eradicating a disease or condition. If breast cancer is prevented before it afflicts someone, then that person will not suffer the irreversible effects that cancer often leads to, and that person will not have to take potentially harmful drugs and treatments in hope of becoming better. The media needs to get its priorities straightened in order to prevent such movements towards finding mainly just a cure, or else the masses will get the facts wrong. As it is, most people take what they hear on the news for granted and are not well versed enough on tactics like framing questions and forms of biases in order to think for themselves without making an uninformed decision. Breast cancer is a vital issue nowadays, and it must be taken seriously, if preventative measures are to me found successfully. Additionally, according to Barbara Ley, a critic of the healthcare movement in the US, said, “Still the growing scientific and public concern… played a particularly crucial role in fueling precautionary efforts” (Ley 2009). She finds that these play a large role in establishing precautionary efforts, and this is important to consider when evaluating the success of a strategy from a scientific perspective. Mostly nowadays, celebrities and other important figures in the media are the primary means of getting awareness. Social media is a huge venue for this to occur, and they all take full advantage of this. These celebrities need to understand the importance of precautionary efforts in order to create a suitable environment for preventative research to flourish, at a time where curative research is at the forefront of the media and politics. Breast cancer will always remain an integral issue in the United States and the rest of the world and regardless of implications of a potential cure, preventative successes will always be the most effective route towards eliminating the disease from everyday life. This is on our shoulders as well, and we must spread the word and show the pertinent research that exists today, as it definitely does. Breast Cancer must be stopped, at all costs.

 

Ley, Barbara. From Pink to Green: Disease Prevention and the Environmental Breast Cancer Movement (2009): 106-136.

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