Voting with Your Dollars
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.”
― most widely attributed to (but not without dispute) Edmund Burke
This is the last in a three part series on the economics of fair trade. From the standpoint, that, yeah we all want to make ethical buying choices, but how do these choices fit into our budgets and are they worth it?
The truth is money talks in our society. Every time we make a purchase we are voting with those dollars. Stand back and ask yourself, do you want your dollars to support a system which is only focused on maximizing profit NOW, irrespective of long term consequences? Do you want to actively vote for systems in which people are viewed as expendable resources to be used up and spit out? OR do you want your dollars to support forward thinking, environment-respecting, people-honoring institutions? Make no mistake, when you make a purchase you are supporting something, for good or for ill, like it or not.
I, for one, have chosen how I will vote, who and what I will support. I will spend my money with organizations and companies which are seeking to protect this planet and are committed to helping each of its communities thrive.
The more of us who stand together and demand fair trade, the more fair trade will become the norm. And economy of scale will come into play. Some prices will come down. Of course never to the level of say a price of sneakers sewed together by eight-year-old hands working 12 hours days; but we don’t want prices at that level, do we?
It’s high time to abandon the myth that our community can live in isolation, we are members of one integrated world. What affects the migrant worker and the land in Guatemala eventually affects us here in Atlanta Georgia.
I urge you to use YOUR vote, use YOUR purchasing power, to stand with us at Fair Trade Atlanta. Stand with us to protect the rights of people and the planet. I urge you to say no, fair trade does not cost too much. In fact, in the big scheme of things, the cost is far greater if we let price alone determine what we will or will not buy. Let’s be budget conscious in the very smartest way possible.