Cancer, Steve Jobs and Truly Helping

Steve Jobs passed away tonight.  He had most recently been battling a rare form of pancreatic cancer, a cancer that hits pretty damn close to home for my family and others lately.  I was an Apple hold-out for a long time, but my first Apple product was the iPod Nano.  When the iPhone came out, I was dismissive.  I would never use a phone to surf the Internet.  Then I played with one in an Apple store and was hooked.  Three iPhones, two iPads and one MacBook Air later, we are almost 100% an Apple family (I’m typing this post on a 6 year old HP laptop).  I admired Steve’s vision and innovation.  He truly changed how we interact with everything from music to the Internet. 

He died in October, which is also breast cancer awareness month.  While last month’s Facebook meme about breast cancer seems to have faded away, I’m seeing tweets daily about breast cancer awareness and most of them are inocuous which is the problem.  If you want to raise awareness, that’s great.  Sure, we’ll be more aware that cancer exists.  But wouldn’t you rather DO something? Do something that could potentially help find a treatment for cancer?  Last night, someone I follow on Twitter tweeted whether she should add a pink streak to her hair for breast cancer awareness and asked yes or no.  Several others tweeted back versions of “yes, cool!”  I responded, “No.  Donate $$$ to research instead.”  She responded a tiny bit defensively but said she would dye and donate.  Ok.  Detente achieved.

I’m no role model.  I’ve walked on ONE Komen walk.  I need to do more with the American Heart Association for my father, but I’m just so tired of the easy, feel-good actions being pushed.    As the recent Babble MomCrunch article pointed out, a lot of brands grab on to breast cancer awareness but contribute very little of  your purchase.  What I really want everyone to do is the think critically and do something meaningful that will make a difference.

A few links of interest:

Tonight, I made belated donations to those groups.  Will you or will you dye your hair instead and hope that helps find treatments for cancer?

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