There are great things going on right now. There are amazing and brave people taking action at this very moment to make all of our lives better. They act to make the right things happen. Personally, I admire these kinds of people.
First, take a look at the following:
“Sweatshops and modern-day slave labor are producing the world’s best-known brands for a pittance. You’ve heard it all before, but it’s worse than you think. There is an even darker side to the global fashion industry, and this story has yet to be told.
It involves child slavery, 1,000 deaths a day from pesticide poisoning, farmers committing suicide in staggering numbers, pet cats and dogs made into leather, the destruction and contamination of our planet. All this is conveniently brushed under the carpet. This is the story of the innocent people who are ‘dying to clothe you.’”
When you read the words above, how do they make you feel? For the longest time, I couldn’t digest this information, and my first impulse was to hide from the facts and pretend they were not true; it couldn’t really be happening, not here and now for sure. Maybe in some horrible parallel reality, but not in mine. Could this be true? Did somebody actually die while making this very shirt that I’m wearing right now? I was totally shocked and felt that there was nothing I could do.
Why would somebody do such horrible things to other human beings and living creatures, as well as to the environment? Eventually, I realized that there is no ‘they’. Believe me, this thought shocked me even more. God damn it, it was me who was doing it. It was me who was happily buying this cheap crap and then throwing it away after few months of use. I’m not doing it anymore, but let’s confess – we’re all guilty.
“Tiruppur, India—the t-shirt capital of the world—is now so polluted with chemicals used for bleaching and dyeing that it has become a toxic wasteland. Garment workers here have a life expectancy of just 5–10 years.
In China, over 2 million pet cats and dogs are stolen and skinned alive each year in the name of ‘fashion’. Their skins are used for gloves, wallets, belts, hats, collar trims, toys and accessories. Deliberately mislabeled, dog and cat leather is being sold to unsuspecting customers throughout the world. Most of these dogs and cats are domestic pets stolen from families on the streets and still have their collars on.”
This information is terribly shocking and annoying. We’re not living in a fairy-tale world where everyone is equal and justice rules; we’re the bad guys who don’t do anything to change the situation. I hate it. But you know, you can either choose to stay depressed and motionless, or you can choose to act.
I would like to mention that nobody asked me to write this article, and I didn’t receive anything for it. It is purely my will to act and spread the word because I feel that this is the right thing to do. Moreover, I was inspired to start my own project when I first heard about Dying to Clothe You. So, here I am, writing this article.
Of course, one article will not make a big change, and two projects will not save the world. I totally understand that.
But the point is that by raising social awareness, we will already be facing a brighter future. So go and do your right thing—give a donation, write an article, start your own project regarding issues that are the most disturbing to you, or share information on your favorite social media.
Cover photo by Averie Woodard