I eat. I drink. I sleep on a bed. I own a home. I purchase furniture. I wear clothing. I use soap. I use bug spray. I drive a convertible. I, clearly, use a computer.
I rarely think about where these items come from, how they are produced, and the costs of these products outside of their dollar amount, so it is always disarming to read that many of these items are the fruits of child labor, unsafe farming, unethical social conditions, and other practices I stand against.
This article that my friend Megan passed along from the New York Times (“Death by Gadget”) provides an interesting reminder about our job as consumers to make sure we are consuming things that are produced responsibly and ethically. If I would not steal from my six year old neighbor next door, then why should I buy a computer that has been made with stolen materials or by children not paid for their labor? One thing I learned in 8th grade economics is the law of supply and demand. If demand goes to zero, then eventually, supply will go to zero as well. As consumers, we are in charge of the demand. It is time for us to make sure that we demand sustainable, ethical, products.