Pinkwashing Turns on Itself with Breast Cancer Awareness Gun

Smith & Wesson Breast Cancer Awareness PistolOctober was Breast Cancer Awareness month, and the group Breast Cancer Action seized on the opportunity to promote its Think Before you Pink campaign to raise awareness of how companies are increasingly exploiting breast cancer as a marketing device to sell products -- some of which are actually harmful to women's health. Pink ribbon campaigns are offering up some bizarre, albeit benign products like a breast cancer awareness toaster and a breast cancer awareness floating Beer Pong table. But the most bizarre item yet to have a pink ribbon slapped on it must be Smith & Wesson's Pink Breast Cancer Awareness 9 mm Pistol, promoted by a woman named Julie Goloski, Smith and Wesson's Consumer Program Manager and a sharpshooter herself. Goloski is promoting S&W's breast cancer awareness pistol on her Facebook page, saying "October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Breast Cancer Awareness M&P’s are shipping to dealers. I am thrilled to have my name associated with such a worthy cause and one of my favorite firearms." According to a 2008 report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, firearms are the second most common cause of violent deaths of women, accounting for 29.2% of all violent deaths among females in the U.S. in 2008.


S&W is not the manufacturer of one of the leading causes of death among women. S&W is one of the leading manufacturers of a product that saves womens' lives and allows them to defend and protect themselves against predators and people who would violently end their lives. A handgun is not the same as a cigarette and your analogy has zero relevance. Handguns don't go around killing women by themselves. They are benign pieces of metal and plastic. They are wielded by criminals. More women are killed by far by automobiles yet you don't want to claim that automobiles are a problem?

You royally missed the point Anne. You need to inform yourself before you pull useless statistics out of the air. Kudos to S&W for raising breast cancer awareness.

Guns are designed for that purpose. Vehicle manufacturers have been developing and incorporating features into cars for decades to make them safer: seat belts, air bags, back-up warning alarms, sensors to detect movement behind them, etc.

Anne Landman

If guns are designed to kill and maim, they don't do a very good job at it. There are a few hundred million guns in the United States yet deaths attributed to firearms (all sorts of deaths including suicides, justifiable, self defense, murder, gang land, accidents, etc) are in the low tens of thousands. With all those guns designed to kill not many people comparatively are dying by guns. Automobiles on the other hand kill many more people a year and they are not even designed for that. Imagine that.

A gun is designed to throw a projectile out the barrel. That is all. The fact that that can kill or incapacitate does not mean all guns are used for or designed for that purpose. But when you need to throw that projectile out, for example, to defend yourself against someone trying to rape or kill you, you want something that does it well. S&W handguns do that well and are used by police all over the world as well as by citizens who want to defend themselves.

Anne, you miss the point. Cancer sucks. People supporting the fight against cancer are the good guys. Using a self defense firearm as the vehicle to raise money for that purpose is a good use for that firearm.

"a device that is one of the leading causes of death in women"

guns don't kill people, trigger fingers do.

Not posting comments because you dont agree with them. Seems like you dont actually "encourage users to analyze, comment on and challenge articles on PR Watch". Classy, real classy.

The Center For Disease Control is famous for using misleading statistics to get people to believe what they want them to believe. The truth is that firearms have saved many more womens lives than taken them. I applaude Julie"s efforts to raise awarenes about breast cancer and promote livesaving products such as firearms.

What if a car manufacturer donated money for breast cancer awareness? I bet cars are involved in the deaths of many women. Oh yeah, but you don't have an irrational fear of cars.

There's already a breast cancer awareness [ Ford Mustang]!

Never mind how the pollutants from the exhaust contribute to disease!

Anne Landman

Well, I hope you get your way soon, Anne. Then breast cancer research won't have any money at all.

550 rapes, 1,100 murders, and 5,200 other violent crimes per day are prevented just by showing a handgun. In less than 0.9% of the time is the gun ever actually ever fired.

* Gary Kleck, Criminologist, Florida State Univ.

My wife has breast examinations and carries a firearm regularly, yet I feel she's better protected from criminals than from cancer.