Editor’s note: This article was written in 2013. On August 31, 2013, the White House announced that they would not honor the petition request even though the childhood cancer community exceeded the required signatures. Since then, the number of children diagnosed with cancer has increased to 43 per day and the White House went on to be lit in pink for Breast Cancer in October of 2013 and 2014. On June 24, 2015 the White House was aglow in rainbow lights to mark the Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing gay marriage. I do not have a problem with the White House lighting to bring attention to Breast Cancer or to celebrate a special occasion. I continue to have a problem with the White House not taking the opportunity to bring attention to childhood cancer in the same way. Our community does not forget when those who can help choose to look the other way.
Mr. President, on February 7th of this year (2013), a WhiteHouse.gov petition was completed requesting that the White House be lit in gold in September in honor of childhood cancer awareness. The required number of signatures was exceeded by more than ten percent.
Since then, various organizations have made several attempts to determine the status of the petition. Your staff is not returning our calls nor are they answering our emails. It makes you appear uncaring and that you have turned your back on our children. The childhood cancer community is asking if you will make this symbolic gesture to recognize childhood cancer awareness by lighting the White House in gold in the same manner it was lit in pink in October of 2012 to recognize breast cancer. September is just around the corner and we have heard nothing!
Mr. President, Yes or No. We deserve the courtesy of an answer to our request. Turn around Mr. President. Now that you are done honoring the 1972 Miami Dolphins for winning the super bowl, maybe your spokesman, Josh Earnest, will have enough time to send an email letting The Ronan Thompson Foundation know about their petition to light up the White House to honor the children whose lives were and are affected by childhood cancer.
A symbolic lighting of the White House will let America know that childhood cancer is indeed a problem and needs the attention of all Americans. Your gesture will also spread awareness around the world where the problems are even worse because of the lack of medical care and poor diagnostics. We need help sir, and we need it now.
Thank you ,
To our friends in the childhood cancer community: Here’s an easy way to let the White House know how you feel. http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/write-or-call