Random Rants, Social Justice

You do what you can…

A few months ago I watched a convicting show about Walmart on Frontline that caused me to not want to shop there anymore. I also saw one about the credit card industry that I found quite disturbing. (Thanks to Zach for the recommendations.)

Unfortunately, not very long after I viewed this shows, I once again found myself in a tight spot financially where I couldn’t afford to shop anywhere but Wal*Mart!

Bill Power, lead singer for Blenderhead, wrote a forward for Simplicity, and after I read the book, I looked him up online, and found his blog at iambillpower.org. Soon I started checking out some of the links on his website, including Adbusters and Behind the Label.

So lately I’ve been thinking a lot about these two interwoven issues of corporate domination and the related sweatshops which increase their profit margins.

Something that’s a little disturbing is the fact that so many punks wear Dickies and Converse Chuck Taylor All-Stars because of their non-mainstream, all-American, enduring qualities, but Converse was bought out by Nike (like the biggest sweatshop offender in the world) in 2003, and Dickies has also moved their factories overseas where U.S. labor unions cannot guarantee living wages. Oh, and Vans (as in the Warped Tour) uses sweatshops as well.

This transcript of a Salvadoran worker’s rights meeting is what did it for me. After reading this, I no longer have any doubts as to whether Dickies’ Central American plants are sweatshops or not.

I’d almost rather spend money on clothes that are made in countries like Nicaragua, Haiti, Mexico, China, etc., in order to support people there who could really use our money. But if they’re only making 30 cents an hour, than I’m investing in a self-perpetuating system and practically condoning slavery!

Now, don’t get me wrong–I am a Republican. But I am a Christian first, and the Bible is very clear about how we need to do all we can to not be a part of the world system.

The coolest thing about the Adbusters Blackspot campaignis that it’s radical, yet not radical at the same time. Instead of throwing out your whole entire wardrobe, you can just alter your current branded clothing to make your anti-corporation statement. Just draw a black spot over the logos with a black marker!

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