As I walk on campus every day I witness a reoccurring theme amongst the students and faculty at Quinnipiac. Everyone seems to have colorful wrists. Yellow. Pink. Blue. Red. Lately, it seems that charitable promotions like the Lance Armstrong Live Strong Bracelets have turned into more of a fashion statement rather than to support a good cause.
At first I thought that showing your support for your donations to charities like The United Way and The Lance Armstrong Foundation were a great idea. Donate a dollar, get a bracelet. Seems like a good deal right? Well, last time I checked you weren’t supposed to receive anything for a charitable donation, other than feeling that you have accomplished your good deed for the day and helped someone in need. Giving to charities and civic organizations, in my opinion, should be an anonymous gift, not one to brag about or show off.
Although it’s not just the yellow bracelets that have caught on. Pink bracelets support breast cancer research. And red bracelets support belonging to an abstract group known as “Red Sox Nation.” I didn’t think I needed to pay $10 and wear a red bracelet to show people my admiration for a team I’ve rooted for since I was born.
The reason behind this rampage is the fact that these bracelets seem to be getting out of control. Recently, I saw a student wearing three bracelets on each wrist, each a different color. Now, come on, that has to be distracting. How can he take notes in class? Does he take them off when he goes to bed? Or maybe he plays ring toss in the shower with them.
My point is this: giving to charities is an excellent idea; however, not for the purpose of getting a material item in return and then wearing it around for everyone to notice your generous monetary gift.
I get a lot of comments from those wearing bracelets such as, “‘But I know someone who died of cancer,’ or ‘I’m a huge Red Sox fan!'” Don’t we all know someone that died of cancer? And we live in New England; (well at least most of the year) probably half the people you know root for the Red Sox (maybe more now, because they finally won a World Series).
As you are reading this article you are probably thinking, what a jerk! How could he be saying such negative comments about a good cause? Let me make it clear that I support the idea of donating money to those in need, however, I’ll send a check to a charity organization of my choice knowing that I don’t need something in return like a cheesy, rubber bracelet.
Next time I walk to class and ask someone what time it is, I hope they’ll be wearing a watch, like most normal people, instead of five bracelets on each wrist.