With advocates ranging from George W. Bush to David Beckham it would probably be easier to list the public figures that haven’t uploaded an ALS Association ice bucket challenge video and nomination onto Facebook.
For those of you as ignorant on the subject as myself, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that basically affects the spinal cord and nerve cells in the brain, eventually leading to vital organ failure and then death.
Approximately 5,600 new cases of ALS are reported in the United States each year, and once the symptoms have begun, sufferers can expect a further life expectancy of just three years.
The ALS Association’s campaign to raise money and awareness soon caught the general public’s imagination and it wasn’t long before any given Facebook home page began to resemble a waterfall broken up by text.
However, after the movement’s magnanimous beginnings it has began to feel a backlash at the fingers of the social media ‘intelligentsia’.
The main gripe against the campaign seems to be concerned with water wastage, as some believe that instead of wasting this good drinking water we should be donating the water to “you know, one of those water charities, like unifamex, or whatever it was”.
Taking someone to task for wasting such a small amount of water is a bit like chastising another person for donating money electronically because the electricity needed may or may not have come from a non-renewable energy source.
The water argument is completely void. These places don’t need the water that comes from our taps; what they need is money to build a sustainable infrastructure that can be relied upon to produce clean drinking water. It’s not like the world shares an enormous tank of water and those in the West are daily emptying the tank of its contents.
The second charge is that the members from the general public are completely missing the point, not donating, and using the entire event as a means of exhibitionism.
Whereas this may be true to a certain extent, these intellectuals are most certainly guilty of all three charges. They miss the point that somewhere along the way tens of millions have been raised for what is undoubtedly (for the moment at least) a good cause. It is they who have raised no money whatsoever… And it they who have used the event as a means of exhibiting their tissue-thin intellectualism.