Amy Goodman from Democracy Now Interviewing Charles Kernaghan, the executive director of the National Labor Committee
I propose that we, as concious & intelligent members of Mormondom and the world, should have high ethical standards of citizenship. Of all the words of warning given by prophets that should stand in our eschatological mindset is that we should not live beyond our means.
Christianity can be summed up in the Golden Rule.
If the opposite of the Golden Rule is Satan’s rule…then Satan’s rule would be “Do unto others what you would not want them to do unto you.” If keeping “Satan’s Rule” is a sin…then why do we so blindly keep it as consumers?
Why do we buy clothes and commodities from sweatshops and cheap slave labor in foreign countries where we know that people are working 6 day weeks for 14 to 16 hour shifts at a time and getting paid a tuppence for it? Where even last year it was found that children were producing clothes for GAP…a company that was meant to have the highest of ethical standards. Disney, Walmart, Gap, Nike, Adidas, Tescos etc. all these corporate brands use cheap labour in China and other 3rd world countries where the workers are exploited. They even produce dangerous and toxic toys that are hazardous to the health of our children. When will we put our foot down?
As Mormons, we have a socialist heritage in the early church whereby we only took what we needed and gave the rest for others. In my mind, we should still care for our fellow men in our productive and consumptive lives, viewing the United Order as the way God would like us to commune with eachother.
What can we do to be ethical consumers and show love for our fellowmen in an ultra-capitalist world?
My 5 simple goals that I suggest to others:
1) Have as your values…Human Rights, Sustainability, Fair Trade, Workers Rights, Animal Rights NOT status, luxury, influence and greed. Think “Need..not greed.” (Thomas S. Monson) God does not love you more because you are wealthy.
2) Everytime you buy something…think about where it came from, who made it, the situation in which they made it. Apply these principles to industrial farming and the situation animals live in…we are stewards of the earth and of the animals thereon.
3) Everytime you spend money…it is just the same as when you vote for a president/prime minister…it really is! Use it wisely and morally.
4) Secondhand clothes and consumables (etc.) beat fresh sweatshop made designer clothes hands down! Dont believe the garbage that advertisement companies feed you.
5) Get involved in a Union and only buy products where the workers have Union Rights…many Chinese companies deny workers the right to Unionize.
It starts with us…and in the spirit of Martin Luther King. Jr…
One man or woman can make a difference!