Sunday, February 5, 2012

Did Slaves Make Your Clothes?

I never used to put thought into where any of my clothes came from.  After reading this post, though, I started going through some of the labels on my favorite pairs of jeans and tops.  Most of them say "Made in China" or "Made in Cambodia" or "Made in Taiwan".  There were a couple of "Made in the USA" labels, but these labels only made up a small fraction of what is in my closet.  After digging deeper into the subject, I found that several well-known stores use sweatshops, child labor, and slave labor to make their clothing.  It doesn't even take much effort to find a lot of stores and brands that use this kind of labor.  Just do a google search for "(Insert store name) sweatshop" and see what happens.  You'll be surprised to find out just how much of your favorite clothing items come from underpaid and mistreated workers.  Take a look at this video, and then look up the other three parts if you're interested:

True, a lot of us didn't know that many of our favorite places use slave labor.  The very terrible thing, though, is that some of us knew about it and didn't do anything.  Some of us just continued to shop as if nothing was wrong.  I once listened to a friend of mine say, "I love that place!  It's my favorite store," right after I had just finished talking about its use of sweatshops.  Now, how can we possibly support a system that routinely abuses, exploits, dehumanizes, starves, sickens, and kills our fellow human beings? We can't.  The only way that these stores and brands will stop giving us cheap clothes at the result of abuse is if we all simply refuse to buy.  But how?  It seems like every last store uses slave labor of some kind.  How do we find a place that refuses to exploit human beings?  

Well, here are a few alternatives.  I haven't bought anything yet because I don't need any new clothes right now, but the second I do decide to buy things, I will be posting reviews on this blog.  Feeling adventurous?  Need a new skirt?  Want to give the person who made your clothes enough money to take care of his/her family?  Why not try out one of these websites? 

You might just find your new favorite clothing. 

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