There is a theory that by annoying people with the ice bucket challenge it means that it is a good thing. The benefit is that people are talking about it, and that shares information about the charity. It does not really matter what charity the challenge is for. By talking about it, people are aware that there are others out there living with terrible diseases and conditions.
For the ALS Association, the ice bucket challenge has been a major benefit. People who have never heard of the disease before are picking up the phone or going online to donate money to the cause. Sufferers, of which there are around 30,000 in the U.S., are finally at the forefront of people’s minds.
Unfortunately, because there are so few sufferers compared to other diseases, the pharmaceutical companies are not putting in the money needed to find a reason behind the disease; let alone a cure. Sufferers are left to count down the days that they have left to do all the things they like, before they end up completely paralyzed, on breathing tubes and no longer able to speak.
Anthony Carbajel is just one of the latest members of the public to do a video of having ice water thrown over him, but it means so much more to this man. In fact, his video has gone on to touch the hearts of people. Carbajel is a sufferer of the disease and it runs in his family. He cares for his mother at the moment, but that will not be possible in a few years—possibly a few months—time. At the end of the video he shares the news that his fingers are already weakened. His video is available at the end of this article.
He makes a point that by annoying people, the ice bucket challenge is doing some good. Sufferers are finally being spoken about and money is being raised to potentially find some sort of treatment. Unfortunately, it may not be enough until the pharmaceutical companies finally step in with their billions of dollars to help.
For many making the videos it has all been a bit of fun. This has annoyed people as more and more see the same type of videos showing up on their newsfeeds. Some people have refused point blank to get involved because it will be just another video on social media accounts. Some people think that it is boring and want to go back to seeing all the usual funny stuff appear.
However, this is a scary disease that so few people know about. It is debilitating and sufferers usually have three to five years to live after being diagnosed. There are some who will live longer, but the quality of life is not there. They need 24-hour care to help them eat and breathe.
Within a few weeks, the challenge will go away. People will stop sharing videos, especially once the cold weather rolls in. However, right now it is doing everything that was hoped. It is raising awareness and money for charities, especially those that very few people hear about on a regular basis. The ice bucket challenge is doing good by annoying people.
Opinion by Alexandria Ingham