“I feel absolutely sick after watching the news tonight. First, we hear of over 100 people dead after a fire at a factory in Bangladesh – people working overtime so we can have our stuff. That factory makes over $35 million a year and they can’t afford fire regulations? Then the news switches to record sales for black friday and predicted record sales for cyber monday. Does anyone else feel sick?”
I’m serious. The news was in that exact order. No one flinched. I wonder if anyone felt the tension between the two stories? I can honestly say I cried. I had a moment of utter disgust in myself because I feed this with my lust for more. Another shirt, the newer gadget. A friend wrote a comment on the thread that said, “We live in a world where people say “I am blessed” when what it usually means is “I have lots of STUFF” I admit; I’m guilty ….. heartbreaking!” Another friend wrote, “Black Friday always makes me nauseous. And it’s right after the day where we are supposed to be “thankful” for what we have. Something’s wrong with that…”
Those comments hit my heart. We equate blessing with “stuff”. I look at the wages these workers get in places like China and Bangladesh and think about how our greed is only allowing major poverty to continue. I laugh ironically at this because hubby and I used to make Boxing day an annual tradition, but now I find it all quite sickening. Watching people trample over others and fighting over items demonstrated for me a culture that has put its faith and love in “stuff”. I hate that part of me it reveals.
As much as I can and more than ever, I am wanting to make better global choices when I shop. I want to support fair trade whenever possible. And even more, I want to be content with little. I don’t need another white shirt. I don’t need a new pair of Nike kicks. I sure want another pair, but I’m good without them.
I’m not saying I won’t take in a good sale. I want to foster thankfulness and blessing without money and stuff ruling my life. I know I am only one person and can’t change global poverty on my own. Perhaps the greatest impact would be inside of me and inspire my children to live likewise.
You can read and watch the news coverage I watched on the Bangladesh garment factory fire here