Ta-Tas and the Pink Bracelet
A pink bracelet with the words"Save the Ta-Tas" is not a fashion statement. It is not an attempt to use nasty slurs. It has no bullying potential. And yet, and yet it was taken from someone who wore it in support of a loved one. This is a view of our society using a microcosm of a bracelet and the reactions it created.
"Save the ta-tas". A common bracelet and bumper sticker. A euphemism for female breasts that is closely associated with early detection and treatment of Breast cancer. It is a way to heighten awareness of a disease that is hitting younger women all the time. It is a reminder for young ladies to review the family history for breast cancers of relatives. It encourages self care through awareness.
My grand daughter has such a bracelet. Her cousins lost an aunt to breast cancer. It is not blood relationship, it is family. She wore it in support of her cousins who are growing up knowing that a wonderful woman; a college professor, a great artist, talented musician was taken by a devastating illness.
They also know their chances of getting this disease are much higher than the average population. This wonderful woman died before they were able to identify the specific genetic component that travels through some families. On my side of the family there is no breast cancer, at least that we are aware of. So, the family does not sit around worrying about the possibility of breast cancer. They support increased awareness.
So far, so good. Right?
I have seen bracelets in support of Live Strong, an organization started by Lance Armstrong, now known to be a doper. I see bracelets for Justin Beiber and other light weight entities. Bracelets are a common way of showing support.
My grand daughter is not allowed to wear her pink bracelet in school. She is in seventh grade. Bracelets are allowed that are not "sexual" in nature. So, it is acceptable to show support to a teen idol, and an organization that used a figure now known to dope. They are not required to take these off.
I don't like the campaign of "Save the ta-tas".
In my old fogie mind it trivializes and fails to use appropriate language when talking about a body part. I also don't care for all the boys names associated with the word penis. What I think is more wrong is to condemn a way of getting to school age children about the ravages of breast cancer and the need to openly discuss a disease that has ripped many families to shreds as it takes younger and younger women.
To have to remove this bracelet indicates that it is wrong to talk about medical problems. It is wrong to show support to those you care about. I may not like the ta-ta campaign but I think it provides for more open discussion and learning. I find it hard to believe that in a country that allows open discussion of ED at prime TV hours, openly discusses periods on TV, and has all sorts of TV that is filled with blatant sexual comments is so up tight about a small pink bracelet. This bracelet is covered by clothing much of the time. It does not stand out. It means something to those who wear it and takes away nothing from others.
In reality I support breast cancer research but do not contribute towards research. I do that with women's heart disease that kills many more than breast cancer. So my dog in this fight is not so much about breast cancer as this country's personality traits. It is OK to show pictures of aborted fetuses, we can discuss orgasms lasting more than four hours in the middle of news programs. I find this intrusive and would gladly change channels but it is pervasive. My children were brought up to pay attention to the news as we would discuss events at the dinner table. I don't think a 10 year old is ready to have 4 hour orgasms discussed. News now includes invasive testing of women as politicized by legislators. I find pictures of aborted fetuses extremely gross and obscene. These things seem to be accepted by the American viewers. These same people stopped a young lady from showing support to her cousins.
I find this sad.Last edit by Joe V on Jan 11, '15
AKY is retired. Mother of 3, grandmother of 2, she believes in children and the need to educate children with all the resources we can find. You can find her dusting off her soapbox every once in a while.
aknottedyarn has 'a life time' year(s) of experience. From 'Delaware. River and State'; Joined Jun '08; Posts: 8,003; Likes: 23,280.
Must Read Topics3Feb 28, '13 by leslie :-Dwe've always lived in a pardoxical society where 'we' will wear the badge of puritanism with pride...
yet won't hesitate in utilizing scare tacticss (e.g., aborted fetus) or marketing an all points bulleting that assuredly is $$ lucrative.
actually, it's not paradoxical, but tremendously hypocritical in exploiting the bottom line or whatever the agenda is.
i don't appreciate the way in which breast ca has been overly sensationalized.
and i particularly dislike the implied correlation of being prohibited from wearing a pink bracelet r/t its perceived, sexual innuendo.
that is just incredibly warped.
this country needs genuine dialogue, person to person, people to people...
if we are ever to make strides in educating and making others aware of these serious issues that warrant our attention.
still, i don't see that happening anytime soon...
as long as politics and greed continue in dominating the so-called ethical/moral foundation of this nation.
as it goes, it can, should, and sometimes will, start with ourselves.
i love hearing your thoughts.
leslie3Mar 1, '13 by nursel56 GuideMy first response to this is that if it was my 10 yr old grand daughter who was asked to remove that bracelet, her parents would most likely have to physically restrain me from going down there and making a big unpleasant scene.
It is ridiculous, for all the reasons you mentioned. God forbid they balance the overwhelming onslaught of sexualized images of breasts any normally intelligent first grader would not fail to notice. Heck, even kids in sitcoms like Two and-a-Half Men have pre-pubertal boys joking about the bazoombas, the jugglies, or (pick one of thousands) of colloquial words for breasts.
If the bracelet actually used the word "ta-tas", maybe your DGD's teacher could use it as an opportunity to educate the kids. I think we've all seen 12 and 13 yr old girls who are sexually active. Their young brains take it all in even if we don't notice it.
I remember when my son was in kindergarten, one of his little classmates was being treated for leukemia. The teacher, and the boy's parents got the kids together, invited other parents who chose to attend and explained all about Josh's illness in terms they could understand. We shortchange our kids when we assume they can't grasp these things. I've always been amazed at how well they grasp things. No, not in sophisticated language . . .I don't know how but they do get it.
You have more patience than I would, I think, AKY. So many times schools implement sensible rules but fail to critically think each individual case, such as when a child bringing a cake-cutter with his birthday cake for the class gets suspended for carrying a weapon! --shaking my head yet again---Last edit by nursel56 on Mar 1, '13 : Reason: it's what I do4Mar 2, '13 by lilymarmaybe i'm in the minority here, but the bracelet IS inappropriate. if they had bothered to use appropriate language- breast -instead of a sexist, demeaning term, then it would have been allowed. Would anyone have fought for a boy to wear a T-shirt that said "Save the ____ (insert slang for testicles)" with a picture of a scrotum? If anyone is still foaming at the mouth over the "horrible injustice" of the school's decision, try looking up a blog called But Doctor I Hate Pink. It's written by a woman who was diagnoses with breast cancer, works in a school, and HATES the "save the ta-tas" campaign. she points out that some kids like to use the bracelets to bully and sexually harass each other.3Mar 4, '13 by Elvish, BSN, RN GuideQuote from lilymarI have my issues as well with the 'save the ta-tas' campaign, and pink is my least favorite color (and God with His sense of humor gave me a little girl who LOVES pink). But maybe we ought to be teaching kids not to bully or harass, rather than do away with the pink breast cancer research items.she points out that some kids like to use the bracelets to bully and sexually harass each other.
I'm with nursel56 on this one - this is a FANTASTIC opportunity to educate kids, and somebody in the OP just missed it.3Mar 4, '13 by nursel56 GuideQuote from lilymarI'm thinking the word may have been embossed on the bracelet like the LiveStrong bracelets? I agree with you about sexist imagery, but this one is pretty tame.maybe i'm in the minority here, but the bracelet IS inappropriate. if they had bothered to use appropriate language- breast -instead of a sexist, demeaning term, then it would have been allowed.
I know many women with breast cancer hate hate hate Pink October, I think mainly due to corporations selling all the pink for profits and not returning much in the way of research money. I'd say they were probably right on that account, but the campaign does create a sense of purpose among women and families and events to rally around.2Mar 4, '13 by aknottedyarnI am glad to see comments from various points of view. I went through a pink phase and like others I have been turned off to pink by the Pink October. My DGD's bracelet looks like the one pictured. Being naive and not at schools at all I find it hard to understand how this could be a source for bullying, but I guess everything has bully potential.
I don't know anyone who likes the ta-ta campaign. Of course my world is filled with mostly people of my age. As I said, I would rather use correct terminology. If it were done in an intrusive way I would agree it is not appropriate. I tee shirt on a tween or teen aged girl saying "Save the breasts" would be very inappropriate as would one on a boy that reminded about the need for testicular exams by announcing the need to "Check testicles in the shower".
I do appreciate that it is a sensitive subject. The wearing of pink by football players may increase awareness and the acceptance of saying breast on TV. It is too bad that the airwaves are not as ready to put testicular exams in PSAs. Alas, it is easier for us to say breast than testicle. This is the mentality of our society. If there were a similar campaign using slang that got the point across of the need for men to do exams I probably would be as uncomfortable as the ta-ta campaign is. If a bracelet or another means of education existed for this purpose I probably would put aside my dislike for words to get the point across.The fact that we all seem to be in agreement that we don't care for the word is interesting. Discomfort does not always equal not acceptable.
My DH's uncle died of testicular cancer at age 32. They were close. That fact led my DH to do routine checks. I find it sad that men may die of this disease because of discomfort with the words for gonads. Words are not worth dying for in this area.
I do appreciate other POV. I don't know that I am right but I don't think my DGD was wrong in her support of her family members. Perhaps she was ahead of the curve. I hope someday that curve includes both sexes.1Mar 12, '13 by OCNRN63Quote from nursel56There's a documentary about this "pink washing" that deals with breast cancer fund raising and research; I can't remember it off the top of my head but I found it in iTunes and Netflix.I'm thinking the word may have been embossed on the bracelet like the LiveStrong bracelets? I agree with you about sexist imagery, but this one is pretty tame.
I know many women with breast cancer hate hate hate Pink October, I think mainly due to corporations selling all the pink for profits and not returning much in the way of research money. I'd say they were probably right on that account, but the campaign does create a sense of purpose among women and families and events to rally around.
I choose to support ovarian cancer. It may be less common than breast cancer but it is far more lethal, yet it gets less financial backing for research and support programs for patients and survivors.
As far as the bracelet, I personally find it inappropriate for students to wear during school time.Last edit by OCNRN63 on Mar 12, '133Mar 24, '13 by Not_A_Hat_Person, RNI think also a "save tha Ta-tas" bracelet is inappropriate for school. Would you defend a child wearing a blue bracelet that said "Save the (slang term for anus or mean person)s" or a testicular-cancer colored bracelet that said "Save the Balls"?
My family has a long history of cancer, but breast isn't one of them. I'd hate to think that my mother's colon cancer didn't "count" as much as someone else's breast cancer.
When I tried to find resources during Mom's treatment, I was amazed and infuriated at how many were available for breast cancer patients only. I suppose leukemia patients don't need rides to treatment, colon cancer patient don't need wigs or makeovers, and brain cancer patients don't need housecleaning.Last edit by Not_A_Hat_Person on Mar 24, '132Mar 24, '13 by aknottedyarnI agree about the over popularization of breast cancer. Yes, it is a terrible disease and it does kill. But not as much as some other diseases. As I said, my money goes to heart disease, especially in women. Colon cancer is a huge issue. The morbidity is so body and mind altering. Kidney disease is recognized by the government as needing special treatment financially. Anyone who has cared for someone with chronic pulmonary issues knows the trauma to everyone in the family.
I don't think there is a better or worse disease to go through, necessarily. Probably each one of us who has family with a specific diagnosis has opinions about that entity.
I personally change my mind about the bracelet. It is non-intrusive so I have no problem with that. My issue has been and probably will continue to be the fact that I hate the euphemism of ta-ta. So some days I am much more negative about the use of slang than others. Probably it has to do with where the rest of my mind is. It does not effect my life in any close way. Other things are much more close to home and hurting currently.
I appreciate the honesty and some of the anger I read in your posts. If we raise awareness of other diseases and get more people to do routine checks for other cancers, follow better diets, take care of health rather than wait for disease to confront our lives then we are successful as health care providers.