So there’s this thing that’s happening in North America right now – Gilda’s Club, a charity organization that raises money to support people with cancer, and which is named after famed comedian Gilda Radner, is changing it’s name to something more generic. The reason?
Young kids don’t know who Gilda Radner is.
Look, if you don’t know who Gilda is, that’s fine. I mean, check her out as she’s seriously awesome…but whatever. It’s a thing, it’s cool. I’m fine with it. I don’t know a lot of famous people.
My problem is:
WHO THE HELL CARES IF TEENAGERS DON’T KNOW WHO SHE IS?
Here are some charitable organizations that exist that are named after people I don’t know:
– Susan G Komen (breast cancer)
– Stephen Lewis (AIDS)
– Princess Margaret (cancer. I have no idea if this is even a real person.)
– Any fucking athlete that has a charity named after them
There are way more, but it’s early and I haven’t had enough coffee to make my brain work.
MY POINT IS:
Who cares if someone doesn’t know who an organization is named after? Like, honestly, it’s not the name that makes people donate, it’s the cause. It doesn’t make me feel like I’m going to have a strong, personal connection with a celeb because I donated $5 to to their foundation…it makes me feel good to know that I’m helping make a difference in the only way I know how.
It’s not the name of an organization that makes people jump into action. It’s the work the organization does.
Gilda Radner died of cancer. People loved her a lot and there’s an organization in her honour. That’s pretty special. And it’s raised millions of dollars to help people with cancer, which is also pretty special. If I started an organization in my dad’s name, I’d be crushed –crushed- if someone decided to change the name, just because they had no idea who Peter Serwylo was. Like, fuck you. Fuck you in your generic-name-loving face.
This organization is a great one, named after someone people loved and respected. To take her name off it just to make things more understandable for 14 year olds (by the way, they’re changing the name of the clubs to “Cancer Support Community”) is pretty fucking disgusting, and the money that will be used to make the name change (from registration to websites to letterhead) could *probably* be used in a better way.
We’ve already let the young kids get away with taking language down a knotch. Let’s at least try to keep a few of them inspired by strong women of history.
Edit: please note that not ALL Glida’s Clubs will be changing their names; it was one specific branch that made the change official. Take a look at this link to read a bit more about this story. Gilda’s Clubs are a fantastic resource for anyone dealing with cancer, and there are clubs all over North America. Google for your closest club, and please consider making a donation to your local chapter.