Writer argues for P-Day awareness

Brian Allen

No one could have missed Vagina-Day, the women are so well organized that their myriad of issues were highly profiled. You can’t cross campus without seeing a pink breast cancer ribbon and women’s basketball teams across the nation have been wearing pink jerseys to honor victims, to raise awareness of and to fight breast cancer. Let us not forget Wear Red Day for women’s heart disease awareness. There were movies and monologues and nights out during V-Day week, or should I say month. You have to tip your hat to our sisters, they got it together.

But where is P-Day, the men’s equivalent to V-Day for raising awareness of male related issues? What color is the prostate cancer ribbon? We are not animals. If you prick us do we not bleed? Men have issues too! According to the Centers for Disease Control;

•Heart disease and cancer are the top two leading causes of death for males. In 2002, 340,933 men died from heart disease, the leading cause of death for men in the United States. The most commonly diagnosed cancers among men are prostate, lung, and colorectal. Testicular cancer occurs most often in men between the ages of 20 and 39.

• In 2004, males accounted for 78% of fatal unintentional drownings in the United States

• Males take their own lives at nearly four times the rate of females and represent 78.8% of all U.S. suicides.

•Males are at higher risk than females for motor vehicle crashes, falls, drowning, and homicide. Compared with women, men are twice as likely to sustain a traumatic brain injury and four times as likely to sustain a spinal cord injury.

• Nearly 5.3 million incidents of Intimate Partner Violence occur each year among U.S. women ages 18 and older, and 3.2 million occur among men.

• In 2006, almost three quarters of HIV/AIDS diagnoses among adolescents and adults were for males.

Men need to raise awareness of their own gender issues like the women have. Men are slow to seek medical help and don’t participate in preventative health screening as they should. Young men are full of bravado thinking that they are invincible and will live forever. The CDC says you aren’t and you won’t, especially if you are not aware of the health issues particular to your gender.

Until we do organize, you can get more information on male health issues, prevention, diagnosis and treatment form your doctor, the Student Health Center in Morgan Hall, Room 170, 785.670.1470 and the CDC at www.cdc.gov/Features/MensHealthatCDC/