In the era of social media stunts becoming viral, it’s easy to develop an attitude towards them akin to the old man who hoards the neighborhood Frisbees in his backyard (damn kids). But dammit, when it’s for a good cause you place your distaste aside and join in on the fun, which is why we here at Caps Hill are spreading the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to the Caps blogosphere. We’re all a winter breed anyway, right?
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, (also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, leading to muscle weakness, loss of the use of limbs, and difficulty with speaking, breathing, or swallowing. Pete Frates was diagnosed in 2012 with ALS and has since then lost the ability to speak. He posted a video of the challenge to the tune of Vanilla Ice’s beloved “Ice Ice Baby”, encouraging participants to nominate others. The rules are simple: Either dump a bucket of ice water on your head within 24 hours of being nominated, or donate to ALS research or the charity of your choice.
Although the naysayers of any viral stunt are abundant, the benefits for the ALS research fund have been irrefutable. The ALS Association has reported that since the end of July, they have collected over $1 million in donations. During the same period in 2013, their donations were a mere $22,000.
Since the challenge went viral, everyone from Twitter playboy Biznasty to Caps players John Carlson and Evgeny Kuznetsov have joined in. Even President Obama to Alexander Ovechkin have been nominated to participate. Some stunts are arguably more impressive than others…
And although we here at Caps Hill don’t have room for a helicopter in our overhead budget, we’re still joining in on the fun. Hell, it’s for charity. JP from Japers Rink*, Adam Vingan and Michael Jenkins: You’re next. You have 24 hours to complete.
One last item. The Capitals have a great community service program that you should involve yourself in. Head over to Caps Care and learn more about how you can make a difference in our community.
Running list of Capitals players that have done the challenge (As of 8/17/2014)
*JP from Japers Rink was already challenged and took the icy plunge