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Scene Points: F#%k Cancer

 by Chelsea Ide  published on Thursday, September 1, 2005


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Punk rock bands are known for getting organized for politics. The genre mouthpiece Fat Mike (from NOFX) did his best to rock Bush out of office a year ago. But punk, emo, metal and hardcore bands speak out for more than giving Bush the boot.

Punk rock photographer Mark Beemer established the Syrentha J. Savio Endowment in 2002 to aid underprivileged breast cancer patients with the cost of medicine and therapy. A year later, he started the Shirts for a Cure Project that's where the musicians come in.

Using his rock photographer connections, Beemer asked bands, from Bad Religion to Dillinger Escape Plan, to offer up a shirt design to be sold on his site. One hundred percent of the cost of these limited edition band tees goes into the endowment, giving cancer the middle finger.

The number of bands clamoring to donate a design to help those with cancer shows a trend in the community. These genres stereotyped as apathetic or self-indulgent are neither. The bands involved with Shirts for a Cure are socially aware and realize the importance of using their status for a selfless purpose.

Gilbert band turned Warped Tour veteran Scary Kids Scaring Kids has offered a design to the project. Keyboardist Pouyan Afkary says it's obvious why his band did this.

"Why wouldn't we do it?" Afkary says. "We will use any small influence we have to do some good."

That's the general consensus of Shirts for a Cure crew. What's especially notable is that the majority of musicians involved in this project are men, and the endowment raises money to help women. Guess their moms raised them right.

Aside from the slew of band designs (including ones from Avenged Sevenfold, Bouncing Souls, Converge, Less Than Jake, Rise Against and Thursday), there are a couple designs for the endowment and one shirt that states the mindset of all involved with Shirts for a Cure. The shirt simply reads: "fuck cancer." Damn right. If any word ever deserved to be preceded by the f-word, it's cancer.

As an added bonus, it's nice to know that if my breasts ever develop strange lumps, there are some cute punk rock boys ready to save the day.

Each shirt, including the best f-word shirt ever, costs $12 (plus shipping and handling) and can be purchased at www.shirtsforacure.com.

Reach the reporter at chelsea.ide@asu.edu.



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