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Ellen Degeneres unintentionally trivializes ME on her show today

Discussion in 'Action Alerts and Advocacy' started by waiting, May 4, 2012.

  1. waiting

    waiting Senior Member

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    Did anyone catch the Ellen Degeneres Show today? She is a wonderful person who helps so many and makes them laugh, something that can be a bright spot in the day of someone suffering from a debilitating disease like ME. However, there was a brief, unintended sour note in her opening monologue today, when she was joking about various awareness days and unfortunately included May 12th International Awareness Day for ME/CFS, FM and MCS. Of course, it would be funny if there was a day set aside to recognize everyday tiredness. As we all know, May 12th is not recognized for anything as trivial.

    On a website about talk show recaps, it said Ellen also found out that this is the 20th anniversary of May being declared National Salad Month. Mark your calendars, because also this month are holidays such as Fatigue Day (May 12) and National Teachers Day (May 8). There truly is a holiday for everything. (Source: http://www.recapo.com/ellen-degeneres-show/ellen-jokes/ellen-cinco-de-mayo-national-salad-month-the-avengers-trailer/.)

    I think it might be a good opportunity for us to inform her show of the facts about ME and how its jokes like this that keep the disease from being recognized for what it is and from being researched properly.

    The History of May 12th Awareness Day is described here: http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=381277917239
     
  2. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    L'engle likes this.
  3. L'engle

    L'engle moogle

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    The fact that she knew about it is interesting in itself. I imagine if someone can get a comment through to her she might think about it again and take May 12th more seriously. I would read it as her knowing about an awareness day that most probably don't know about yet, but just having not really thought about ME before. The awareness in itself is a good thing, as a first step. Let's see what happens :)
     
    WillowJ likes this.
  4. nanonug

    nanonug Senior Member

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    I think Ellen is a nice lady. If she knew people are dying with ME, I am pretty sure she could be easily convinced to do a show, same way Dr. Phill did about Lyme Disease.
     
  5. maddietod

    maddietod Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting this. I just wrote a friendly note through the link provided above, briefly saying how serious this illness is and a tiny bit of my personal story. I agree that she's a very nice person, and hopefully she'll "wake up" about ME if some of us write to her.
     
    *GG* and L'engle like this.
  6. Ivana

    Ivana Senior Member

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    I sent her an email months ago outlining the disabling effect ME/CFS has on people, inforned her of facts, and asked her to run a story on it before awareness day, May 12th. I wonder if that's where she heard, or perhaps it's something she and her production team already knew. I just sent her another email telling her about her comment and perhaps to change it to actually highlight the impact of ME/CFS. I like her show and would love to see a story on about our illness.
     
    *GG*, taniaaust1 and L'engle like this.
  7. K2 for Hope

    K2 for Hope ALways Hoping

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    Thanks for the link. I just sent an email. I truly think she is a kind-hearted person and if she gets enough response, not blasting, but explaining, she might give us better exposure than we could hope for.
     
    Little Bluestem and *GG* like this.
  8. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem All Good Things Must Come to an End

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    I'm guessing that someone on her staff acquired a list of all of the awareness days for the month of May.
     
    ixchelkali likes this.
  9. SickOfSickness

    SickOfSickness Senior Member

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    Yeah, some clueless joke writer saw Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and butchered it. CFS is the worst name ever :(
     
    ixchelkali likes this.
  10. Sparrow

    Sparrow Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting this, and for the link. Hopefully if enough people write in with bits of information, somebody will decide we're interesting enough to investigate further.
     
  11. Merry

    Merry Senior Member

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    I sent a comment asking Ellen and her staff to find out more about ME/CFS and told her my mother's and my experience with this illness. In closing I said that any attention she could bring to the subject would be appreciated.

    Thanks, waiting, for letting us know.
     
    L'engle and Nielk like this.
  12. ixchelkali

    ixchelkali Senior Member

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    You can also post on her Facebook page.
     
  13. Purple

    Purple Bundle of purpliness

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    In case it is possible to post pictures on her Facebook page and someone here wanted to do this, some of these may be useful:
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...11066913.36588.223472531087571&type=3&theater
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...11066913.36588.223472531087571&type=3&theater
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...11066913.36588.223472531087571&type=3&theater

    Also, a copy of 'Voices from the Shadows' could be sent to her. It is an exceptionally well made film.
     
    waiting likes this.
  14. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Hibernating

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    Note on commenting on her facebook page, if you are going to comment, make sure it is well written and to the point. No speculation about causes, but simply that it can cause severe disability and has greatly underestimated impact/disease burden in society. Along with any points about having very little medical research being done given the impact, if you choose to mention it.
     
    L'engle, waiting and biophile like this.
  15. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    I have sent a message.
     
  16. mellster

    mellster Marco

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    I have to object to this. It is really not important to me what a patients symptoms are, if they are significant and impact their lives then they deserve to be treated, even something as simple chronic fatigue and even "without the syndrome". Sure it is unfortunate that extreme tiredness makes easy jokes, but so do stutterers and tourette-patients. You could argue that besides stuttering or saying profanities and having tics they are perfectly healthy, so why should they need special treatment? Still they all deserve medical help as much as people with infectious diseases, ME, diabetes and everyone of us who has a condition. Naming it ME so that nobody can easily joke about it will not solve anything and leave those that don't have ME (whatever the definition for this is) but one of the other basket chronic conditions such as CFS or FM or whatever left behind. I don't think that the jokes are the problem (though some may and also will be very tasteless), but the medical and scientific community and governments and insurances who hide behind those jokes and willfully ignore facts that these are physical conditions that need to be taken as serious as the yearly flu.

     
    Sparrow likes this.
  17. frenchtulip

    frenchtulip Senior Member

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    I have always seen Ellen as a truly compassionate person. She apparently had no idea that the illness is a real physiological illness and is very serious and complex. Thanks to everyone who has seen her info.
     

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