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.


Firearms are not a leading cause of death for women. Assualt of any kind isn't even a leading cause of death for any group. If you look at the CDC death statistics, assault comes in last, behind 14 other causes. More people die from Parkinson's disease than from assault.

Distinguishing between assaults performed with and without firearms makes it even more trivial.

The number one cause of death for women, and men, is heart disease. In fact, in 2005, heart disease killed 10 times as many women as breast cancer (400,000 vs. 40,000). In that same time frame, about 2000 women were killed by someone with a firearm, less than 50% of the total number of women that were murdered.

So, by your logic, I guess fast food chains better contribute to breast cancer research, since they're tied to the leading cause of death in women.

Which is quite convenient (and well chosen to make your point) since is doesn’t show up in the top 10 of actual deaths of women. I kinda think that was the other commenters point, but you knew that.

Guns aren't even in the top 10 causes of death in women:

Firearms are not a leading cause of death in women according to the CDC.

Here are the leading causes of death among all women in the US and the corresponding percentages.
1) Heart disease 27.2%
2) Cancer 22.0%
3) Stroke 7.5%
4) Chronic lower respiratory diseases 5.2%
5) Alzheimer's disease 3.9%
6) Unintentional injuries 3.3%
7) Diabetes 3.1%
8) Influenza and pneumonia 2.7%
9) Kidney disease 1.8%
10) Septicemia 1.5%

Septicemia still kills 2,500% (25 times) more women than are killed by an attacker with a firearm.

No worries though, when you wake up in the morning, you still won't be a journalist, but you'll still be exceptionally biased.

This site is as worthless as your opinion.

Because your first comment (the one to which many of these replies were referring) doesn't make the distinction "violent death".

You haven't refuted a single point that's been made in this thread. Your entire rebuttal amounts to sticking your fingers in your ears and saying "naa naa naa, I can't hear you".

Of course, bigotry of any type is not rational and requires no justification in the mind of the bigot so I suppose it's unrealistic of me to expect you to be able to defend your position...but just in case you are capable of evaluating facts rationally, lets take a look at some:

There were 1,905 females of all ages that were victims of gun homicide in 2006 (the last year for which the CDC has figures).

It is estimated that guns are used in self defense up to to 2.5 million times per year. Lets be conservative and say 1 million defensive gun uses a year, and we'll be even more conservative and say that only half of them involved women...probably more of them did because many DGU's happen at home where both men and women are present...but we're being conservative, so, for purposes of this illustration, we'll guestimate that 500,000 defensive gun uses per year involved defense of women.

Now, not all crimes result in a homicide, so that must be considered also. The most obvious comparison is with actual completed crimes. Since we used 2006's numbers for gun homicide, we'll stick with that year. In 2006, there were 1,418,403 violent crimes (I limited it to violent crimes because non-violent crimes, by nature, typically do not warrant defensive gun use, or result in a homicide, so those crimes are irrelevant to this discussion). In that same year there were a total of 17,030 homicides (all ages and genders). Therefore, the rate of homicide per violent crime was .012.

Let's assume that the rate of homicide for all of the crimes prevented through defensive gun use would have been the same. Using the figure of 500,000 defensive gun uses involving women, times the rate that violent crime results in homicide (.012) we reach an estimate of 6,000 women who's lives were saved through defensive gun use in 2006. Granted, that's only a rough estimate, but remember that I was conservative with my DGU estimates in the beginning. if anything, this estimate is probably on the low side.

6,000 women's lives saved by gun use, versus 1,905 who were killed by perpetrators using guns.

And your contention is that the gun industry should feel guilty about saving the lives of 4,095 women?

What have you got against women?

No, you missed the point!

Just like Julie Goloski Golob, there are many women who are working for one goal, which is to promote breast cancer awareness, to keep the topic up fresh in women's minds. ...and men's for that matter.

Breast Cancer Awareness is the main topic that must not be over-looked, regardless if a penny or one hundred dollars goes to the cause. Making sure that millions of women are educated about the topic is what is most important. Products and prominent sports figures like Julie do just that. If only 1000 women are enlightened on the topic, they are encouraged to see their doctor, learn about self-examination, etc, then the venture pays off. I don't care if they sell pink bazookas, if it accomplishes the goal, then it works.

I have lost aunts, my god-mother, and way too many friends from the disease, and if putting a pink adjustable backstrap on an M&P helps, then so be it. God bless S&W, and Julie for pushing the idea.

Please look past the firearms aspect. Realize that a good person, and good American company are trying to do a good thing for a good cause. We can see that you don't like guns. That's your preference.

Thank you,
Mike Luciano

Having actually used the product of the company in question to protect myself from a violent criminal, as well as for more peaceable and recreational purposes, I have to wonder just who is missing the point here, Anne.