Pouring cold water on the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Everywhere you look these days you will find someone doing the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. If you have been living in a cave (way in the back part of the cave),then here is a very brief overview:

You are challenged to pour ice water over your head within 24 hours or donate $100 to the Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) Association. ALS is often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. For more information, try here:


I think it is an awesome way to raise awareness of the disease, and raise some money for a good cause. Guess what? Some folks aren’t too keen on the idea. The problem is wasting water. I get it. Some people don’t have enough/any water. I don’t suggest the Ice Bucket Challenge to raise money for The Water Project (http://thewaterproject.org/).

If people just gave as much as the could, as often as they could, then we wouldn’t need gimmicks. The reality is that we need a little push sometimes. If gimmicks help raise money and awareness then so be it. Let’s not try to “poo poo” their efforts. I imagine given some introspection we can all see our own wastefulness. Now if it was the “Skin a Live Cat Challenge” I would understand the outrage. A bucket of water, not so much.

One way to skin a cat

One way to skin a cat

I remember after the earthquake leveled Haiti there was a great outpouring of support. Give to the Red Cross. Concerts. Speeches. And then we had the people who decided to focus on how the Red Cross is run and how much per dollar actually made it to the people who needed it. Once again, I get it. Instead of crapping all over other people’s altruism try a more positive approach and offer alternatives.

For example:  Instead of “You are all idiots wasting water that people in Africa could use.”  Maybe you give a nod to a charity like The Water Project.  Of all of the horrible, cruel, brutal, vicious things we do to each other I would rank “Wasting water while raising money for a charity” as pretty low. A better instance of REALLY wasting water would be :

“Portland to flush 38m gallons of water after man urinates in reservoir”



My solution was to accept the challenge, drink the water (so as not to be wasteful) and donate $100 to the Special Operation Warrior Foundation which is just my charity of choice.



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