I’ve got bad news; it’s MONDAY again! Are you ready for another week? I’m not, but nothing’s going to stop it, so I say bring it on!
I’ve also got GOOD news! A GIVEAWAY! The Fourth of July is coming up soon, and to celebrate, I’m giving away a $25 gift card to Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts! That’s right. Delivered to your doorstep in an envelope signed and sent by ME.
And you thought it was going to be just another plain old week, didn’t you?
So, here are the rules. To enter, head to your closet — wait, not yet, finish reading this first — and take a look at the tags in your clothing. Count how many “Made in the USA” or “Made in Canada” pieces you find. Clothing made in the Northern Mariana Islands (a commonwealth in political union with the United States) does NOT count — Here‘s why. You don’t have to look at every garment or spend much time doing this; just take a quick gander and tally it up in your head. Then, post the amount here in the comments. I will draw a winner using a random number generator on July 5th (the contest will end at 8pm CST) and announce the winner on Tuesday, July 6th. You do not have to have the most “Made in the USA” items to win the contest; sometimes finding zero domestically-made items is as informative as finding many of them.
If you’d like a little deeper thinking while you’re looking, think about the store where you got your clothes and how much you paid for them. Notice how the least expensive clothes are made in China, the country that pays the most people the lowest wage, all in the worst working conditions.
Why am I asking you to do a closet check? If you’ve been following my blog, you know that working conditions and compensation at factories in developing countries, especially in the garment industry, are horrible. The United States, especially large U.S. companies, feeds off of and feeds into this sweatshop economy. And U.S. law, in its current form, allows and even encourages moving manufacturing jobs overseas as well as importing items from countries that do not have or do not enforce fair labor laws. So, I, and I hope some of my readers, are endeavoring to STOP personally supporting sweatshop labor in the garment industry by buying clothes from companies with stellar labor reputations, or, if that’s not possible, to make it ourselves (hence the gift card to Jo-Ann’s).
So go check your closet; I promise, it’s kind of fun to see where all your clothes came from. Think about what you’d do with $25 to spend at Jo-Ann’s. And, every time you purchase clothes, ask yourself who made them and whether the low price of the clothes is really worth the human cost.