Pink October Had Become Troublesome Hot Potato For NFL, So They Chucked It
So the NFL has moved on from Breast Cancer Awareness Month: their annual support (since 2009) of the American Cancer Society which runs through every October. That's when the league becomes a pink tsunami of uniform and field accessories, with most of the equivalent merchandise available for purchase at the NFL Pro Shop.
* As of 2013, out of every $100 of pink NFL merchandise sales, only $3.54 went to actual cancer research. Much of it went toward overhead and salaries.
* The NFL says it doesn't profit from the sale of pink cancer awareness merchandise. The $45 of every $100 made, it says, goes toward the cost of running Breast Cancer Awareness Month. But "merchandise" is a tricky word. Does that include auctioned game-worn items, which bring in huge amounts of cash? That’s still unclear, and the NFL won't clarify.
The NFL has taken much criticism over these issues, not to mention the fact that there is still a strict no-tolerance policy on any cancer awareness uniform accessories during the other months. And why just breast cancer? It's a serious disease to be sure, but there are other serious cancers out there.
Beginning in 2017, the month of October will be dedicated to all cancer awareness, with the NFL allowing teams to choose their own cancer awareness causes. There will be no identifying color.
This has brought out the cynics in flocks.
— Steven DeJong (@StevenDeJong93) December 13, 2016
— YtownGuy (@YoungstownGuy) December 13, 2016
— Edward Tobin (@EdwardTobin2) December 13, 2016
Same with Breast Cancer Awareness month and the military service month. The NFL cares about selling stuff, not causes https://t.co/3SIuYJqLz1
— Omar Kelly (@OmarKelly) December 3, 2016
I have to admit being in the cynics' camp: the NFL is simply too big of a money factory to let true altruistic causes get in the way of business. They don't do any groundskeeping on the moral side of the fence unless forced to do so.
But it's not necessarily a bad thing. Every now and then Roger Goodell can do a good deed by accident, and when striving to protect the NFL's profit margin dovetails with doing some actual good in the world, we all win.
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