Schwab: Dangers of the Ice Bucket Challenge


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It seems everyone has heard about the ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge. The challenge dares people who have been nominated to pour ice-cold water over their heads within a 24-hour period or donate to the ALS cause. ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. ALS causes these cells to deteriorate at a rapid rate, eventually causing death. So, far the ALS Association have raised more than $40 million for this organization.

Even the writers at The Daily Iowan have done the ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge. Who challenged us? The Iowa State Daily, of course.

Oprah, Jennifer Lopez, and Bill Gates have also dumped ice water on their heads.

The question is: why are these big celebrities taking on the challenge? For the most part, it seems they’ve been pressured into it. They don’t want to be in the news as the one celebrity who didn’t do the Ice-Bucket Challenge for a great cause that countless people all over the world are supporting. Social pressure isn’t the only ill that has come about with this phenomenon (or fad). Some have raised concerns about what the money is actually going.

Pamela Anderson definitely put me in shock when she decided to not do the challenge;, instead making a Facebook post about how she had looked deeper into ALS research and discovered measures she didn’t agree with. What she found was horrifying. Pamela stated the following, “[In] recent experiments funded by the ALS Association, mice had holes drilled into their skulls, were inflicted with crippling illnesses, and were forced to run on an inclined treadmill until they collapsed from exhaustion.” She continued, “Monkeys had chemicals injected into their brains and backs and were later killed and dissected."

When fads such as the Ice-Bucket Challenge come along, I challenge you to look into what it is you are donating toward before you take the plunge, or in this case, get doused in ice-cold water. Think before you jump into something, because you never know the facts until you look for them.

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