We are often confronted with the pictures and news about children, who are working under terrible conditions, just to make a production of various industries more profitable. Day-in and day-out, video clips are showing suffering children in process of textile production, plastic recycling, smart phone or electronic production. We are touched, sad and angry, but as well often ignorant and unaware.
The first reaction is usually a critique against profit-oriented firms, but only the few are really aware about system complexity and our role in it. People may argue that awareness is there, but actually, it is not. Many of them look at such stories the same way they look at the houses on their daily walk to work, without noticing them. They are mostly not attentive enough to realize number of houses or their colors, not even to mention recalling smaller details. Looking at something is not the same as seeing it and definitely not as seeing it through.
Awareness that each of us is responsible for shaping society is still largely missing. It is not easy to get out of the consuming set up because our greed makes hungry ghosts out of us. Our wishes and consuming behavior is collected the moment we buy something or search in a web. There are numerous algorithms, which accurately calculate and analyze each our wish using it as a basis for the market development and advertising engine.
So we are the ones who create the market. We may be manipulated (and we allow it), but WE ARE THE MARKET.
It is true that firms want to profit as much as they can. They will go to the highest level so far other factors are not limiting (competition including). For that they will try to make production the cheapest as possible. Let’s face it, not one single firm will do it differently! They prefer to spend more money on commercials than increase wages or make other more ethical or ecological efforts. Why? Because this investment in advertising can help them win over competitors. And at this point responsibility drops on us. We are the ones who are blinded by nice commercials and pictures and are choosing these who sell us most beautiful story or the cheapest product. To it, we want to spend as less as possible, mostly because we want to increase our profit too.
But we can change all to better. It is actually not as hard once we realize that by simple change of OUR own habits, we can move the market in the right direction. When we stop using plastic begs, market will shrink and though done pollution may not be resolved, it would be at list limited. When we buy cloths and shoes only from fair production, market will react. When we buy smartphones or technical gadgets only than when we really need it and from fair producer, market will adjust.
And it is not only that we have to take responsibility for suffering children working 20 hours a day (just to make us happy for a short consumption moment), but also we should realize that responsibility for our own children rests in our hands too. Do we really help our child with smart phones & tablets? Do they really use it safely? Or isn’t that an instrument, which exposes them to dark net, e-mobbing and de-socialization? Nothing against technology, it is an excellent tool when one knows how to use it and not be used by it.
We can blame whom ever we want but WE ARE the ones who drives society in one or another direction. This is as well a hope, on which we can build our future.
We should only start living more mindfully.