To the Editor:
I was very offended by the misinformation present in Sarah Laribee’s “Solution is not to buy nothing” article. Buy Nothing Day began in 1991, and is an international celebration, not just a practice in affluent America and Britain.
If Sarah had taken the time to visit the Buy Nothing Day booth on campus the week before Thanksgiving, she would have realized that promoters do support responsible consumerism. In essence, responsible consumerism is the whole point of Buy Nothing Day, to take a break from our consumer lifestyle for one day to reflect on our buying practices.
I am not saying that you should never buy anything again, that would be ludicrous. I am saying that you should take into consideration what your purchases support. By shopping at places like Wal-Mart, Starbucks or the Gap, your dollars support slave labor, sweatshops, and deforestation.
We encourage people to buy locally, consider whether or not you really need a product before you buy it, and what the effects of your purchases are on the planet. I also want to say that capitalism isn’t perfect; not that we should use a different system, but that we should use our democratic power to provoke changes that bring about human rights and environmental laws around the world.
In this way, avaricious capitalist corporations will be forced to stop the exploitation of impoverished peoples. This step will benefit third world countries more than any charity or outreach program indirectly provided through our “economy.”