It’s the “c” word: Cancer.
With the Susan G. Komen Foundation’s Mother’s Day Race for the Cure at the Mall of America, coupled with other fine foundations like Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong organization, visibility and awareness about cancer and the continuing need for ALL kinds of cancer research is at an all-time high. Yet cures seem to be as elusive as grabbing water with bare hands.
Last year, the federal government’s National Cancer Institute spent more than $1.5 billion on cancer research. Universities and other private entities spend tens of millions in an attempt to find a cure as well. The results according to the NIH: The incidence rate for all cancers combined — the number of new cancer cases per 100,000 persons per year — declined on average 1.1 percent per year between 1992 and 1998.
Billions spent and a 1.1 percent decline in cancer deaths. Seems to me room for improvement exists.
When America needed an answer to put an end to WWII, Roosevelt ordered The Manhattan Project, leading to the creation of the world’s first atomic bomb. Success. So to speak.
If the best scientific minds of the world were required to band together, like The Manhattan Project formula, I imagine we would experience much more remarkable and ever-lasting success: A cure putting an end to a disease that robs people of their lives every day.
Now is the time. We need to urge this to happen so good people like Eldon, who writes the popular blog Fat Cyclist, doesn’t have to lay sleepless at night wondering how he and his kids are going to get on with life when his wife Susan is taken from them thanks to breast cancer. We need get on top of this now so our own moms, dads, sisters, brothers, sons, and daughters don’t have to fight this mysterious disease at any point in their lives.