19 August 2014

Blog #2 | ALS Response: "Why the hate?!"

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has become a viral sensation over the last few weeks. You can barely open your favorite browser without being bombarded by videos of people dumping ice water over themselves and challenging others to do the same, or pay money to the ALS Association.

It's even hit Waverly!
Image Courtesy Waverly Hi-Spot

Of course, whenever something goes viral, the cynics of the world come out in force.

For example, I saw this gem on a friend's Facebook page just the other day:

Courtesy an Anonymous FB friend

I get it: when we see people do crazy stunts online, it's natural to first assume "Oh, what an attention-seeking Jezebelle! Who do they think they are? What a schmuck." That's the negative side of human nature that rears its ugly head when other people have fun.

And to be honest, until I did the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge myself, I was skeptical about the viral movement.

What was it for? Why were so many people doing it? And, most importantly, was it accomplishing anything worthwhile?

My skepticism disappeared when a Drama Parent nominated the Waverly Drama Club Officers last Saturday to put up or shut up. We did it, and challenged three others: Mr. Ricenbaw, Mr. Daniell, and the Waverly FCCLA Officers. Then, after posting the video to Facebook, I went on to nominate a few friends of my own.

Photo & Video Courtesy Claire Westerholt

In all, our one challenge spread to nine different people. And if each of those nine found nine others to challenge, and then those people found nine others to challenge...well, it's not difficult to see why this movement has spread like wildfire.

It was that night I decided to do some research into the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. It didn't take long to find out that the ALS Association has raised $13.3 million in the same amount of time they raised $1.7 million last year.

And if that alone isn't enough to hush the finger-wagging, "ne'er-do-well!"-criers bemoaning the waste of water (which, by the way, isn't really as wasteful as people are saying...it's called the water cycle, people...you're drinking and bathing in the same water the dinosaurs peed in. Get off your high horse), then you need to stop what you're doing and watch the video of how it all got started.

In the meantime, I'll let Pete Frates himself close for me.

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