posted on Apr, 12 2013 @ 11:15 AM
This is something that was presented to me a while back when I read an article about this with Haiti and subsequently heard an interview on NPR with a
woman from Africa (can't remember which country) who talked about how Western charity, whether through goods or food, is keeping local economies from
developing organically (in the sense of on their own).
The woman's point was that local markets get flooded with cheap processed products, so local farmers can't make a decent amount for fresh, local
produce. Clothes, also being dirt cheap through donation channels, lead to negative effects on local tailors and textile producers, right down to the
To give you an idea of a possible life cycle of these clothes, let's consider an experience I had over 10 years ago. I was riding the subway in
Madrid, Spain and a West African immigrant was wearing a worn out University of Arizona T-shirt. Considering school apparel was probably made in China
or Malaysia or Bangladesh, that shirt made is rounds!
I get that some here consider the plus side of "recycling", but let's not forget the three-pronged approach that recycling comes out of:
Arguably, Reuse and recycle have come to mean the same thing in this case. Tthe first step is "reduce"; we need to stop creating such a demand for
this cheap crap, and stop wasting it. Then, the guilt of throwing it out gets obviated. Repurpose, that should be on that list too...ripped t-shirts