BEVERLY (CBS) – Pete Frates is defending the integrity of the Ice Bucket Challenge after a story in The New York Times seemed to trivialize it.
The former Boston College baseball captain and Ice Bucket Challenge co-founder Pat Quinn sent a letter to The Times that was published Wednesday. It’s in response to a Times article about the “10 concerts” meme, which compared that to “the kind of frivolous distraction that makes up social media interactions, similar to other viral memes, such as the Ice Bucket Challenge.”
Frates, who was diagnosed with ALS in 2012, says that description is wrong.
“The A.L.S. community does not view the Ice Bucket Challenge as a frivolous distraction,” he writes.
The Ice Bucket Challenge, in which challengers dare each other to dump buckets of water over their heads to raise money and awareness for ALS, became an internet sensation in 2014.
Frates wrote that the Ice Bucket Challenge has “forever changed the fight” against ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, by raising more than $100 million for research.
“The funds raised by the Ice Bucket Challenge have already had an impact on the search for treatments and a cure, leading to the discovery of a new gene associated with A.L.S., and helping fund several global research collaborations that are advancing new drugs into clinical trials,” the letter states.