Saturday, June 15, 2013

The legacy of sweatshop production

This is the legacy of sweatshop production. These grieving women are relatives of “missing” garment workers protesting at the site of Rana Plaza, the garment factory building that collapsed on April 24th in Savar, Bangladesh. The death toll is now 1,130; the state buried 301 unclaimed bodies (which means they were probably too disfigured to identify). Many of the 2,500 “rescued” lost one or more of their limbs.

Grieving is part of the legacy but, as these women demonstrate, so is protest against sweatshop production which is spreading like a virus across the planet worse than swine flu. Some retailers engaged briefly in a flurry of damage control; most US retailers are so imperious, colonial, & impervious to consequences they didn’t even bother to recite ritual mea culpas.

We can’t immediately bring these retailers to justice & stop sweatshop production but we can educate ourselves & others in several different fora about this vile & violent system of labor. The less we do about it, the more likely our children & grandchildren will learn about it right up close & personal.

(Photo by Abir Abdullah/EPA)

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