There has been such a sleuth of Ice Bucket Challenge videos floating around on social media over the past month that I’d like to share with you my own reflections on this phenomenon.
I applaud all the brave souls in the world who have taken upon the challenge, especially those who have done it with style and intelligence.
I also admire the ballet dancers who took the challenge with unusual and amazing moves:
Ashley Bouder of New York City Ballet continued doing fouette turns in her tutu after being dumped with the ice bucket
Lindsi Dec of Pacific Northwest Ballet did two graceful arabesques en pointe when showered with an avalanche of ice water
After all that’s said and done, and when the bruhaha has died down, perhaps we can take a step back to look at what really lies behind the challenge.
First, it’s good to get an idea of what ALS is and how a person with ALS lives from day to day. Here is a video of a young man, Anthony Carbajal, who was recently diagnosed with ALS and who took that challenge with a great sense of humor. He explains how three generations in his family have been diagnosed with this debilitating condition and shows how hard everyday life is:
There are environmental-minded people who feel that dumping ice water on one’s head is a waste of precious water resources. So why not just donate the money directly?
Hollywood star Matt Damon has chosen to face the challenge with a twist, while spreading the message about his own water cause at the same time:
Or, if you just simply don’t want the ice cold water on your head, you may choose to donate money with class, like what Patrick Stewart of Star Trek fame did:
In contrast with these thoughtful responses to the challenge, I have seen videos of two Hong Kong parents who dumped a bucket of ice water on their baby… The video has since become private, probably due to shame after being flamed by netizens. There is another case of a Hong Kong mother who took on the challenge as a trendy thing to do. She said that because of her foot injury, she decided to let her toddler pay the mother’s “debt”! Down right stupidity if you ask me!
What I don’t like is how people use this challenge as a way to show off their bravado and not giving the focus on the cause behind it. This is the predominant trend of the movement here in Hong Kong, where the majority of the population loves to follow whatever is trendy and cool at the moment.
If you’d like to know the origin of the challenge, which actually had nothing to do with charity, let alone the ALS cause, read this Slate article.
Lastly, I’d draw attention to the issue behind the ALS “cure.” There is a perception among the mainstream that by donating money to the “cause,” there is hope for a cure. But I have serious doubts about how effectively the money will be spent. Hoping that the pharmaceutical industry will come up with a cure for the condition is a naive thought. Here is why:
Ice Buckets: NOT the Cure for ALS
If the above link doesn’t work or if you are short of time, watch the video on this page or below instead:
As much as I appreciate the hardship that ALS patients are living with, I’d like to challenge the belief that it is an incurable genetic disease. Ben Johnson, MD, coauthor of “The Healing Code,” has successfully cured himself of the same disease, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, without conventional medical intervention. He used the Healing Code discovered by Alex Loyd.
There is something called the biology of belief, which I mentioned in yesterday’s post. Perhaps after seeing the following video by Dr. Bruce Lipton, author of the book “The Biology of Belief,” ALS patients like Anthony Carbajal and others will find hope in knowing that death is not written in their book of life after all: