Wednesday, August 15, 2012

I Am Over Your Excuses

Do you ever feel hopeless?  Like you shouldn't bother trying to address whats wrong with the world?  Would you rather just not think about it, and enjoy your life while you can?  Is it just too sad to contemplate the fact that we're all going to hell in a handbag?  Do you think people are overreacting?  That GMOs can't really be that bad, no one gets beat up for being gay anymore, there aren't THAT many kids starving in Africa, and, you know, the planet will evolve and fix itself?

Well, knock it the hell off!

Things ARE bad, and you CAN do something about it, and by God[dess], you have a responsibility to do it!

Wake up, pick a cause, and fight like a cat in a burlap sack.

If you have a little extra money, or could buy one less drink at each night out, or pack your lunch a couple days a week, and THEN have some extra money, then do it, and find a reputable, Better Business Bureau rated charity, and donate!

If you don't, don't feel like a bad person.  Volunteer your time!  This doesn't have to mean moving to a third world country for a year, or painting houses in bad neighborhoods...although it could mean these things.  You can tutor, you can babysit, you can take care of cute kitties and puppies (thanks, ASPCA!), you can pick up trash!  Use this website to find the opportunity that suits you.  You can be a 'slacktivist,', and sign, or send and promote every petition, or letter that comes down the pike!  That means something!

Know what else you can do?  Buy in line with your beliefs.  No excuses.  If you think it's wrong to treat animals like objects that can't feel pain, let alone psychological discomfort, STOP BUYING FACTORY FARMED MEAT.  Buy it from Whole Foods using their handy-dandy rating system, better yet, but it from a local farmer, or go veg.  Maybe you can't afford meat everyday when you're paying for the animals to be treated humanely.  That's better for you and for the planet anyway.

How about sweatshops?  Are you a fan of them?  STOP SUPPORTING THEM.  Just.  Stop it.  This can be an even harder one than finding humane meat, but it's not impossible.  Check out Fashioning Change.  This website asks what stores you normally buy your clothes from, and then it offers you similar style options from companies that are doing good things for people and the planet.  Do the clothes cost more?  YES, YES THEY DO.  It costs more to do the right thing.

Being fecking cheapskates is what got us into a lot of the messes we're in right now in the first place.

If you can't afford to spend more on your clothes, stop buying clothes.  Alter and taylor the ones you do have, and if you really need to expand your wardrobe, go vintage, consignment, or thrift, so you aren't adding to the overall not-biodegrading textile load on the planet, or asking children to work long hours in horrible conditions instead of getting their education for you.

Are you concerned about the environment?  Global warming?  Impending energy crisis?  If it's an option, buy a hybrid.  If it's not, drive less.  You CAN do it.  Pretend gas costs $10 a gallon.  Seriously, before you get behind the wheel, every single time, ask yourself if you'd be taking this trip this way if gas cost $10 a gallon.  Use public transit whenever you can.  Carpool.  Ride your bike.  Walk.  Sell your second car, and maybe buy a moped or scooter to use whenever possible.

Change your light bulbs to compact fluorescent.  Turn your air-conditioning up to 78 degrees are higher, and your heat down to 68 degrees or lower.  Wash your clothes in cold water and STOP USING TIDE and other detergents that contain phosphates.

Doing these things matter because if we shut down the demand for things that are bad for people and the planet, those things will stop being produced.

This isn't that hard, guys.  It's really not.  If each of us put our time, our money, our brains, where our hearts are, the world would be a very different place.  We have the absurd luxury in our country of pretending like our everyday actions have no repercussions because we're outsourcing them to poorer people, and our children and grandchildren. 

It's got to end now.  We're better than this.  You're better than this.  Grow the feck up and start acting like it.

Live Omily,

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Emily! I like your no BS attitude. xo style, she wrote

    P.S. Working on a jeans post now. Keep an eye out!