I can honestly say that I try to do my part in creating a better world. I recycle, don’t buy fur, and volunteer as much as possible. However, there are some atrocities occurring that I’m embarrassed to support.
For example, the Coca-Cola company, parent of my beloved Diet Coke which kicks my nightly sweet-tooth without the guilt, has been accused of murdering union leaders as well as other human rights violations.
Watch this short promotion on the documentary The Coca-Cola Case:
The new trend in human rights violations is a result of our consumption of technology. “Recycled” electronics are dumped into remote villages overseas (e.g. China) and the inhabitants suffer injuries and mutilation, not to mention what it’s doing to the environment.
Recently in the news, ten workers from Foxconn, a manufacture for brands such as Apple and HP, have committed suicide. I can only imagine the deplorable working conditions and treatment from management that would cause so many people to this.
We have all seen Blood Diamond, and since that movie many diamond companies have been forced to prove to their consumers that their product is obtained ethically. Now we are taking blood for our cell phones. Coltan is a common product used in making cell phones (smart phones in particular), and there is a lot of it in the Congo.
“This obscure mineral has had the distinction of effectively becoming a kind of blood diamond of the digital age,” professor Jeffery Mantz of George Mason University wrote in a 2008 Social Anthropology article exploring Congolese coltan mining.
Numerous government and human rights groups have drawn a direct line between coltan mining profits and the ongoing atrocities in the region, including dismemberment and gang-rape. ” via Smartphones: Blood stains at our fingertips – The Globe and Mail.
I can honestly say that the next time I go to make a purchase (beverage or cellphone), these evils will cross my mind. However, I can’t admit that it’s going to stop me from buying the product. Are we as innately caring creatures just supposed to ignore this and let it fizzle out of the news? Or will it take Leonardo DiCaprio to capture our hearts and bring about compassion in the world of technology?