Most of us wear the pink ribbon without taking into consideration why the color is associated with breast cancer, and that’s because most of us don’t feel the need to know. If that’s who you are, then that’s okay. But some of us are more inclined to figure out the little bits of trivia in the connections between color and some of the causes we find most dear. Pink is for breast cancer, blue is for child abuse awareness, yellow is used to support our troops, and red is used to acknowledge a person’s support in the battle against HIV and AIDS. Why is that the case?
There are more colors for more causes, and each has a defining reason behind it. This is the reason why the color pink is the breast cancer color.
Founded in 1982, the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation was created by Susan’s younger sister, Nancy Goodman Brinker. Susan died at the young age of 33 after a battle with breast cancer, and Nancy wanted people to be better aware of the disease in order to increase early detection and hopefully prevent more cancer from developing in the first place. It was the best way for her to honor her sister’s memory and help others in the process. The new foundation used pink as its color of choice when providing pink visors in the Komen Race for the Cure, held annually.
Only a decade later, it was universally adopted in the fight against breast cancer. Alexandra Penney, the editor-in-chief of Self magazine in New York City, used a pink ribbon during a new issue as an icon in awareness of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Penney used her sway with the big names inside of the cosmetic industry to hand out pink ribbons in stores all over the place, and the trend caught on in a big way. Now there are pink ribbons everywhere, and everyone knows exactly what they stand for.
One in eight women living in the United States of America will be forced to deal with breast cancer during their lives, while one in a thousand men will have to do the same. Over 300,000 new cases of one kind or another are diagnosed in women each year, while about 2,470 men will be diagnosed with the invasive form. About 40,000 women will die from breast cancer in 2017.
New research is playing a role in the fight against breast cancer, and there may be an end in sight. Until that day arrives, you can do your part by supporting the women in your life or donating to those who are attempting to eradicate this disease once and for all.