Just read a plea to ‘stop using palm oil’, as its production is contributing to a mass deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia, viciously disrupting the ecosystem and destroying homes for the rainforest’s many inhabitants. Orangutans in particular are at risk and are now an endangered species.
We, the west, are fueling this with our reckless and ignorant consumption of the ever-increasing range of products to keep us entertained and keep capitalism ticking over, while people far removed from our own society pay the price of exploitation and suffering for our luxury.
It’s been weighing down on my conscience for a bit now, all this. Seeing adverts on TV often remind me of how crazy, fucked up and atrocious the world is now. Right now. Right now as I type this, there are people slaving away in factories in China, working for a pitiful wage in appalling working conditions. There are people clearing down the rainforests in big bulldozers ready to make way for palm oil plantations. And there are people idly consuming all these tainted products, completing the cycle.
Sometimes I wonder if it will ever stop, if the majority of people actually give a shit about all this excessive consumption and unethical production. And while i’m attacking people around me for either being ignorant pawns, or hypocritical self-righteous preachy wankers, I shouldn’t let my self get away with it either. Right now i’m being massively hypocritical, as I know for a fact I buy so much without knowing where it came from, what’s in it, or where it was produced.
It’s like something I switch on and off when I feel like it, when it’s convenient. Because otherwise we wouldn’t be able to cope. It’s too ingrained in our society. We’ve grown up with it, it’s the norm.
We need to be more ethical and accept that our choices as everyday consumers are affecting other people, places and ecosystems! Cause and effect.
Although you could argue that buying something already on the shelf is only making use of that situation (ie. otherwise it would go to waste, or it would only get bought anyway), it’s beside the point. It’s about principle. Even boycotting a single product would have an effect, on a very small scale admittedly. If we ALL stopped buying palm-oil products then it wouldn’t be such a lucrative deal and they wouldn’t produce as much. Simple really. We can also lobby against the use of it in UK products and spread the word. That’s what one person could do, but if (and it’s a big IF) everyone did it, it would make a difference.
Next time, i’ll tell you how existence is futile, humans are fundamentally flawed and why immediate suicide is the only option. Hooray!
Oh and for anyone (assuming someone reads this) who wants to make a difference —- http://www.saynotopalmoil.com/palm-oil.php