Every year it seems they're back, selling T-shirts or running marathons, or whatever the hell it is they are doing in vain to try and prevent the inevitable. So why am I so cynical? It's because I know a thing or two about Biology. You see, the human species is a dynamic thing, with the birthing and dying of individual humans as much a part of its survival as the actual eating and.. well, you know.
Cancer cures are a fallacy for two reasons; first, cancer is one of the two main forces which acts against the human body to ensure that it is doomed to fail. If cancer doesn't get you, then cardiovascular disease or its consequences somewhere - say Alzheimer's (cardiovascular disease, basically) - will. And we can't do anything about it. Ever. Secondly, curing cancer is misguided because we are simply throwing money and effort down the toilet when the real problem is being pumped into our gas tanks, mined from our mountains and shoved down our fat faces every day: toxic waste, which has been on the rise since the dawning of the Industrial Revolution.
Now some cancers are horrible diseases which take people much too early, and one in particular is an evil bitch I believe can and will be eradicated: ovarian cancer. For whatever reason it strikes a select few unfortunate women and try as they might they are pretty much doomed. Sad. But we have made tremendous progress with Breast Cancer, why? Diagnosis. Bingo! Find it and you can "cure" it, which means nothing more than treating it with radiation and chemicals the old fashioned way.
But a lot of the cancer that afflicts us is not the nasty luck-of-the-draw type. It's a result of our toxic way of life, and our insistence on driving up profits regardless of the public health effects. Lung cancer rates are down, what, 80%? 90%? I could look it up, but I'm too frikkin' lazy to be honest with you. What I do know is that we didn't "cure" lung cancer. We cut down on smoking.
So the efforts of "Cure Cancer" campaigns are noble, but they only reinforce the misconceptions of the public, which is that Cancer is something you "catch," like a bacteria that you can just pop a pill and actually cure. But you know what else is interesting? The pill for curing bacterial infections isn't even the most important tool in the arsenal! It's vaccines. If you give them to everyone at a certain age, then the particularly nasty infections are simply wiped out, and you only have to worry with the annoying ones such as strep throat.
I argue we take a more proactive approach to "curing" cancer. Why not tell people that when a stinky-ass talepipe drives past them spewing black smoke it is literally killing them?
It's true. But we cannot stop the black smoke from rolling out of the tailpipe, why? Because we'd be infringing upon the precious "freedom" of the selfish asshole who insists upon driving a toxic waste mobile down our streets poisoning our air and shortening our lives. We can't stop the coal plants from burning their black poison because then 500 people who work there would be out of jobs!
Well 500 people are going to be out of jobs when the coal runs out anyway, why not just lay them off now?
These sound like pretty crazy ideas, but they are based on some pretty sound science. Probably the #1 contributor to premature death from whatever: heart disease, cancer or diabetes - the big three - is due to the food supply. The crap we shovel down our gullets on a daily basis has the biggest impact of anything when it comes to our health.
Solving these problems means confronting the real culprits: the corporations and politicians who keep subsidizing the corn industry (even though corn grows like shit so we have to fertilize the hell out of it - more poison, btw). So go ahead and wear your T-shirt. Run your marathon. Convince yourself that shoveling money towards Pfizer or whatever drug company to produce newer, better pharmaceuticals is the answer. I say cure the real cancer: the oligarchy of power running this place.
You'd be surprised how few people are actually behind most of the suffering in this world. Want to find them? Follow the money.
We all remember as children when some kid (hopefully not ourselves) was
just a worthless, waste of space, butt of every joke, trash, etc.
Most of us have probably been that kid.
That behavior, whatever its origins, is expressed in adults, too. I
think it would be safe to say that in certain areas Latinos, especially
Mexicans, are seen as 'job-stealing', 'uneducated', 'immigration
law-breaking' criminals, regardless of their immigration status and/or
Muslims in many places, not just Manhattan, are seen as a 'terrorist'
culture that, it seems, meet in the dark - I suppose in Mosques, right? -
to conspire their "jihad" against the US and kill all Americans. They
are 'devils', 'Satan worshippers', and so on.
What's scary is those sorts of ideas are commonplace in mass media.
"Respectable" members of the broader culture - those who get a lot of
attention - repeat and reinforce such beliefs with little or no veneer
of "political correctness."
Instances of blatant racism are not difficult to find on Conservative radio and Fox News.
Moments of questionable speech - easily arguable as Hate Speech - are
almost constantly propagated as 'Conservative Values', 'Patriotism', or
Doing so is not only disrespectful to actual Conservative beliefs and
values, un-American, but also directly opposed to the actual teachings
of Jesus Christ.
What's more, homosexuals, 'gays', or whatever you want to call these
human beings, are seen as a 'threat' to 'family values' and again
In all these examples there is a clear distinction of "Us," being the
flag-waving, God-fearing "true Conservatives" of Jesus Christ's Promised
Land of the U-nited States, and "Them" - which is a loosely cast net
intended, and very effective at, capturing just about everyone else.
Are you a Catholic priest who feels that gay Catholics have a right to take communion at Mass?
YER' A TERRORIST!!!
This nonsense is nothing more than simple "Out Group" behavior in
Western culture, a grown-up, suit-and-tie wearing version of the same
bullying and collective abuse of human beings with differences that we
all experienced and likely participated in as children.
The difference is that some of us grew out of it. I know that my
participation in the abuse of some of my classmates was stupid, weak,
and cruel, and I regret every second of it. I also fell victim to it.
In it's grown up form there is a fine line between picketing that 'evil
Mosque' being built wherever - screw Ground Zero - and building
Concentration Camps to wipe them all out.
Very fine line.
The similarities between ourselves and the Nazis of the 1930s are
horrifying: banks failed, unemployment through the roof, houses
foreclosed on... sound familiar?
If we're not careful we could easily fall into the same pattern and become an abomination.