5.10.2007

What Would Jesus Buy?

Last week I watched a documentary film called Black Gold. The film is about Ethiopian coffee, which companies buy it and how much the grower receives. Many of my friends have heard me rail against starbucks and most of them think it is a "cutesy" pseudo revolutionary action by me to refuse to buy any products they sell.

But when coffee is the second most traded commodity in the world you can begin to understand how important it is that the coffee grower receives a fair wage for the coffee he is growing. In the West, where consumerism rules the day, one of the most effective means of letting a company know you have no faith (or that you think they are destroying peoples lives) in them is to refuse to buy their product. For the most part, corporations are only roused from their greedy slumber by having their life source cut off. A corporation exists for one reason only, to make money. When money does not come in at the rate the corporation expects it to then and only then will it bend an ear to hear what its former consumers are saying.

So it is with much excitement I share with you that today the Ethiopian farmers won a small battle in a larger fight. Starbucks has agreed to a licensing deal for Ethiopian coffee growers that will put more into the pockets of those who grow the beans.

And trust me, starbucks did not do this because it has a heart and really cares for the plight of the Ethiopian farmer. No, starbucks changed their ways the only way real change can come about; through grassroots movements and direct action protests like the ones Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping have been heading up. Here is a video of him and his “church” storming a starbucks where you can bet there was much weeping and gnashing of teeth from the upper management:



Through the Rev. Billy site I also found out there is a new documentary coming out this summer called What Would Jesus Buy. It’s directed by Morgan Spurlock, the same guy who brought you Supersize Me and the television series 30 Days.

I cannot begin to tell you the power I believe documentary films have displayed in bringing awareness to the masses on social issues that most folks might never been made aware of.

I say be informed, it’s a wonderful way to live life.

1 Comments:

Blogger Tim T. said...

that's awesome dude. i still talk to others about Wrong Eyed Jesus.

6:10 PM  

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