October 2010

October is Fair Trade Month

When we think about peace, we don’t often think about our shopping habits. We usually think about John Lennon, war, bombs dropping, and how we wish everyone could just get along. Unfortunately, our shopping habits themselves often contribute to violence and bloodshed rather than the peace we wish for so much.

When we buy diamonds, electronics, and other mining-derived materials, for example, we’re often funding war, genocide, child labor, human trafficking, and even the thing we are so fearful of ourselves—terrorism. When we buy sweatshop made clothes, coffee or crops from slave labor farms, and other cheap items, we’re funding other people’s poverty, misery, and pain—nothing that fosters a peaceful environment.