A while back, I was sitting outside at a café, enjoying dinner with some friends, and a loosely organized parade of people sporting a cornucopia of pink items came walking by. Some wore pink shirts, some pink headbands; even a few pink tutus were present.
By and large, they were laughing, jovial, and noisy. Seemingly unprompted “woooo!” bursts sprang erratically from the crowd. One block ahead, the procession would turn left and head to their final destination somewhere else in town. What I presumed, and later confirmed, is they were taking part in an event sponsored by Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
My reaction? Anger. Gritted teeth. A small lump in the throat. So much of what I was seeing seemed wrong. I don’t doubt that the majority of the participants were coming from a good place when they signed up to participate – maybe they thought they were simply doing something positive, perhaps doing it in memory of a loved one. Without question, participating in that event and raising money was ultimately a greater good than, say, spending that day sitting on the couch watching reruns.
What I question, though, is just how much good it was doing, and for whom.