Jamie's Blog

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Censorship of Breast Cancer Art Project

This morning, Facebook deleted a photo of a magazine cover that featured me for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. As a full time advocate for breast cancer awareness, I am reliant on social media to help people become educated on the devastating effects of this disease. There was no notification, no inquiry as to the photo’s origins, no polite request to take it down. They simply deleted it, along with five other photos featuring cancer survivors. In each of these photos, the outlines of our bodies are visible but our breasts are fully covered by body paint. Flesh tones and nipples (which many of us no longer have) are completely and tastefully concealed under the incredible artwork of renowned photographer Michael D. Colanero and body painter Keegan Hitchcock, the geniuses behing the Breast Cancer Awareness Body Painting Project. There are countless Facebook ads that appear unsolicited showing women in sexually suggestive poses far more revealing than my photos. Millions of men appear bare chested on Facebook with no fear of recourse.

As a two time survivor of cancer, I am hurt and offended. As an advocate and speaker, I am determined to speak out against one of the largest human networks in the world standing between people and information that can save lives. Facebook’s entirely irresponsible process of removing content based on unsubstantiated complaints without review is endangering the public health. Facebook is no longer just a fun distraction; it is a source of news and information that hundreds of millions worldwide rely on. With this success comes a responsibility to approach free speech and advocacy for public health in a more cautious and deliberate manner.

I want to know how Facebook plans to live to their responsibility to protect free speech and ensure that an open and informative dialog can take place on their network.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Talking About Suicide

It might seem odd that I would talk about suicide on a breast cancer website, but the sad truth is that cancer patients often develop depression during the course of treatment. Even sadder is that too often they suffer in silence; either because they don't understand what is wrong with them, or they are afraid to tell anyone. This can lead to profound hopelessness, and even thoughts of suicide.
If you have someone in your life with cancer who is beyond sad and upset, but seems devastated and despairing, don't be afraid to ask this scary question.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Remembering Betty Ford

There was a time when cancer was something that people did not discuss in polite circles, when shame kept them from support and treatment.

Then First Lady Betty Ford revealed to the world that she had breast cancer, and the world has never been the same.  

Cancer survivors everywhere owe a debt of gratitude to this brave lady.  Perhaps even our lives.  
                    (Keep on dancing!)

Monday, June 13, 2011

Not Pretty In Pink

   One of the benefits of joining the fight against breast cancer is the friendships that are forged in the trenches.  One of the best of these friends is Alicia Staley, a three-time cancer survivor and thought leader in the war against cancer. 
     Most recently Alicia has been an increasingly noisy gadfly biting the alarmingly swollen head of the mother of all breast cancer awareness machines charities, Susan G. Komen for the Cure 

Yes, many of us are not only worried about the direction Komen is taking, but about their refusal, so far, to join the discussion.

Alicia's eloquent protest can be found at WEGO Health

Please read it and help us to help Komen END breast cancer in our lifetime.



Thursday, March 3, 2011

Facebook Blocks Breast Cancer Awareness Body Painting Photos

This slideshow is my appeal to Facebook to reconsider their action against this worthy project. Please watch it, then read about it below.

Last summer I volunteered to model for Michael D. Colanero's amazing Breast Cancer Awareness Body Painting Project. Since then I have watched with eager anticipation as Michael released each piece to the public, hoping mine would be next. I marveled with countless others at the beauty and power each one evoked. All of us summoned courage to expose our bodies in this manner, but we gained so much in return. After months of watching our bodies be smashed, cut, poked, measured, burned, and re-examined, to trust our bodies to the compassionate artistry of Michael and his team felt powerful and lovely. Hours of painting, talking, posing, sharing, weeping, and laughing out loud, put us in charge of using our bodies for something great, for other survivors, for the world, for ourselves.

Imagine our dismay when, without warning, Facebook deleted all of the photos, including all of the text and comments.

If you agree with us and wish to help, please share this far and wide. 

Join our Facebook group: http://on.fb.me/hMC5y3

You can contact Michael at BCABPP@uncommonstock.net

Click link to watch YouTube Video on Breast Cancer Awareness Body Painting

I do not claim any rights to this music on this video. Music by Christina Aguilera performing "Beautiful" (C) 2004 BMG.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Five years cancer free, and counting.

I searched high and low for a photo that captures how I feel about this day.  There were wonderful shots of fierce women in boxing rings, and ripped athletes flying over the finish line. But they weren't quite right, because my race is not over, 
and the fight will never end.
This photo of a mountaineer says it all, because she is basking in her conquest, but higher peaks loom ahead.
So even though I might stay cancer free, until the world is cancer free
I will keep on fighting.
But for today
Celebrate with me!