"What breast cancer is, and is not"

[Video Link]

The Komen kerfuffle that inspired this video may soon pass from the headlines, but for people living with the disease, breast cancer—and the fight for dignity, survival, and a cure— is forever. I now count myself among them.

I watched this video many times this weekend, while recovering from the most recent round of chemotherapy. The video was created by Linda Burger, identified in various news accounts as a 56-year-old woman who lives in Las Vegas, NV.

"Linda in Las Vegas," you are my hero. Thank you.


      1. It’s one of those things where, even if you strip away any political considerations, you wonder how someone could be so dense.  But given that she’s a politician and a business executive, I guess it’s not that shocking that she’s clueless.

        1. I think it’s good and necessary that she’s gone but I still want to know what SGK is going to do to _show_ (and I mean actions, not just press releases) that they have refocused their mission on breast cancer. Until they take concrete steps to restore trust they aren’t getting any more of my $$. All the friends I have supported in the walk have agreed that they will do fundraising activities and contribute the money to the important work of fighting breast cancer.  Cancer sucks, and so do political agendas.

  1. Linda Burger!  She is one fine lady.  And, I never would have known how awesome she is without your post, Xeni.  Thanks for sharing her video.  

  2. Thanks for posting this, Xeni. It’s wonderful and I’ll be sharing. I hope that your battle is going well;  if good wishes were enough to fix it you’d be cured already.

  3. Xeni, you’re gonna make it and you’re gonna continue to rock the house con brio!

    My best bud/housemate/sister/wife (if I didn’t already have an old man that is) just had a total boobectomy (her term — if we can’t laugh, what was the point to getting this crazy ass shit)  last Tuesday (as preventative measure because her first dance with the cancer beast came at the tender age of 35).

    This was written on the eve of her surgery. http://donna-tellmeastory.blogspot.com/2012/01/stayin-alive.html

  4. More applause for Ms. Burger. Direct and to the point.

    Kormen blew a LOT of their goodwill by not only backing away from Planned Parenthood — which they could have done by simply finding another partner or another priority — but by making it about the “investigation” which is entirely bogus and entirely political.

    And, in the process, they brought up the whole question of funding and forced folks to realize that Kormen isn’t exactly a shining paragon of efficiency in the use of donor funds. Admittedly they’re partly an awareness organization, and that’s hard to measure… but still, there are many other groups in the cancer, and specifically breast cancer, space who may not be as effective at raising money but may be more effective at using it.

    Getting Ms. Handel off the board is a good first step, but it’s only a first step. They’re going to be getting a LOT of scrutiny for a while. I’m not sure they’ll survive it. I just hope other organizations are able to pick up the support, and fill the gaps, that SGK’s foolishness has cost their cause.

    1. Kormen being an “awareness” organization is one of the reasons why I have a hard time giving them money.  There really was a time when we needed awareness because people had a hard time saying the “breast” in breast cancer .  That time is long since past.  You literally can’t name another malady that people are more aware of.  I don’t even have breasts, and I have a better sense of what I would need to do to watch out of breast cancer than I do something I might actually get, like prostate or testicular cancer.  I really have little desire to fund more “awareness” and pink wash every thing that can accept a coating of pink paint.   There is a point of diminishing returns, and we have long past it.

      Research and treatment is what is needed, and I am a tad skeptical that Kormen is the right organization to most efficiently hand out that money.

  5. Holy crap, that’s awesome on a lot of levels. I can’t thank her enough for doing that. Thanks to you too Xeni, and I’m glad you seem to have found some strength in it.

  6. I saw her video last week as the Komen deal imploded, but I must say?  Linda is strong, surviving and AWESOME.      One line, one phrase? could completely describe my life now  “Cancer removes all your filters”   As I WILL say whatever I think/feel now.  Life is too short to worry about what “other people think”    As everyone who knows me can attest?  this is not always the best thing.

    Hooray for Linda, and as always, best luck, wishes and hopes for you.   If you EVER need anything, you call on me.    the “we survived cancer club” is always willing to help anyone.

  7. Breast cancer and chemo survivor here — seven years past, and everything’s copacetic — sending all the best SoCal mojo and good thoughts to you, Xeni.  And thanks to Linda for one hell of a great video. 

  8. Brava! And, yes, that IS the correct form of the word.  Brava!

    An excellent, informative, enlightening piece of work.  It puts breast cancer more on the kitchen table without being scandalous or exploitive.

  9. This is amazing, thank you for posting. My mother went through almost the same exact experiences as Linda, and I find that what she said is extremely true. Cancer is all of those things, yet it’s also a process that teaches you to be frank, to be honest, and to tell it like it is. I think the world could use more of that (minus the cancer, of course)

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