Public Opinion: Nigerian social media users keep missing the point of #NoBraDay for cancer awareness - Labarai Ingantattu

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Public Opinion: Nigerian social media users keep missing the point of #NoBraDay for cancer awareness

#NoBraDay: Nigerians still miss the point on social media

Dear Nigerians, this is for breast cancer awareness, not for posting sexy pictures to gain followers on social media

You have a better chance of beating cancer if it’s caught early enough. The only way people can understand the insane need to actually detect cancer early is by the spreading awareness of breast cancer.

In his research titled, Combating Breast Cancer in Nigeria; the need for Comprehensive Screening Programs, Taiwo Fasoranti, MD defines breast cancer as, “Breast cancer is a malignant (cancerous) growth that begins in the tissues of the breast. Cancer is a disease in which abnormal cells grow in an uncontrolled way. It is the most common cancer in women, but it can also appear in men.”

"The five-year survival rate for breast cancer patients in the United States exceeds eighty-five percent. In Nigeria, it is a dismal ten percent. Cancer awareness, even among physicians, and much more so among women at risk, needs an enormous boost in Nigeria.

 

Breast cancer accounts for over 60% of cancer suffered by women. Sometimes, it can be inherited from diseased parents as a brca gene mutation - that means a carrier has a 50% chance of having breast or ovarian cancer.

ALSO READ: How to self-examine yourself for breast cancer

Origin of #NoBraDay

 

Speculative cases say that over one million women are diagnosed with breast cancer annually, resulting in over 400,000 deaths annually and about 4.5 million living with breast cancer.

With the global survival rate in Nigeria being as low as 10%, and survival rate in cancer enhanced by early discovery of cancer cells, campaigns need to be organized so women go get a mammogram, to know their status.

We cannot afford to keep losing women to late discovery of cancer cells in their bodies. That is what #NoBraDay is about. The campaign was started by Toronto plastic surgeon, Dr. Mitchell Brown on July 9, 2011, but it was moved to October 13, as October is the Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

It encourages women to go braless to spread breast cancer awareness.

ALSO READ: Symptoms and prevention of breast cancer

The Social Media Misconception

 

Either by ignorance or by willful neglect, social media, an internet-enabled tool, mostly used by the supposedly enlightened millennials, has seen the greatest misconception of what #NoBraDay means and it’s already getting annoying because the ignorance keeps spreading like wildfire to dry leaf.

 

Twitter especially has already started ‘nip-print’ selfies while some ignorant women have seen it as a way to gain social media followers, by milking the poignant event dry. Equally, the equally thoughtless and thirsty millennial men have started stalking certain social media pages for raunchy pictures to satisfy their vanity.

Incredibly, your supposedly enlightened MCM is somewhere on WhatsApp right now asking one woman, he might or might not be involved with for a #NoBra or a Nip-print selfie and your supposedly woke and intelligent WCW is about to oblige him.

Is nothing sacrosanct to millennials anymore?

 

How can a day meant to commemorate something steady claiming lives be so destroyed by a need to see raunchy pictures and further destroyed by something as flimsy as gaining social media followers? 

Are we that insensitive? Oh, silly me, I forgot; we actually are very insensitive.

But at least, we can try to imitate some semblance of sanity and sensibility. Even if you can’t, please fake it, I beg you. 

The internet you so use to buy knock-off attention for your vanity also houses the knowledge of what #NoBraDay means. Do yourself a favour and find out, so you can stop spreading a misconception.

In times like this, one must applaud social media activism that makes the point of what events like this mean, amidst constant abuse by would-be progressive minds.

For those that know and choose to willfully ignore its pedigree, I pray you to find some sense. If you could stop posting pictures of your braless breasts too, that would be fine. But as I know, that’s a long shot.

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