The Curious Case Of The Ice Bucket Challenge

My facebook wall is flooded with posts and feeds of people getting drenched in icy cold water. Scrolling further, I see some more… and more… and omg yet some more people doing the same insane act and challenging others to do it. If you haven’t been a victim of the same, allow me to explain what it is about

  • What the people do is they put up a video of dumping a bucket of ice water on themselves.
  • After that they nominate another person or persons to continue the chain reaction.
  • The nominees, if unable to complete the task, have to donate $100 to the ALS foundation.

images (1) ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. There is no cure and only one medicine to slow its progress has been approved. A lot of celebrities have been dared to drown in cold water, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, challenged by Zuckerberg, Justin Timberlake, Jennifer Lopez, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Justin Bieber, Robert Downey Jr., Taylor Swift being some of them. images (2) Termed as an awareness drive, this was somewhat deemed to happen as no social attention hunger act had been done for the summer this time. After all, how long can we keep our interests in Kim Kardashian’s wardrobe or Miley Cyrus’s antics or Beyonce and Jay Z’s rumored divorce news. I really wish to meet the person who came up with the “utterly brilliant idea” of wasting the most precious resource for the “charity drive”. No, I haven’t drenched myself and put up a video on any social networking site. I have always thought of charity being a sober and simple act. It would be better if I do something for the people in Africa who do not get potable water to drink. This stunt got the people a lot of attention without much effort. It is too much to take in, too much to be charitable, too much to be good. Money magazine reporter Jacob Davidson, who lost his father to the disease, wrote an essay in TIME titled, “We Need to Do Better Than the Ice Bucket Challenge.” ice-bucket-challenge I know what arguments will be put forth: But, at the end, the world can never be too much aware about ALS. In fact, most of the people had not heard the name ALS before coming across those videos and learning why the hell they did it. ALS Association said on Monday it has received $15.6 million in donations since July 29, an eight-fold spike over the $1.8 million donated during the same period last year. Since June 1, a total of 1.2 million videos have been shared on Facebook. And Twitter? Since July 29, 2.2 million users made mention of ALS and the Ice Bucket Challenge. Contradicting myself? Not exactly! President Obama declined the challenge, taking the path of giving up the stupidity and donating the much needed money. No doubt it is creating awareness, but the negative implications too have to be dealt with. If you really want to help, follow these logical steps, which are quite simple:

  • Do not get a camera
  • Do not record the icy act
  • Do not drown the social sites with you getting drenched on a bright sunny day (how challenging!)
  • Write down a cheque for the ALS Foundation.

I will be doing the needful right now. And, I nominate you to keep the chain going! Go ahead! I dare ya!

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