Sweatshops

I have worn team colours in the past

Becoming cloaked in corporate identity

Giving away autonomy for crowd acceptance

Fitting in

Becoming a proxy for a marketing strategy

Where boardroom fictions based on superficial studies into buying habits

Create reality

Reality that echoes the worst excesses of selfish greed

When textiles were made with the blood of children mixed into cotton gins

And even Factory Acts failed to halt the exploitation of the poor

We thought we were better than our forebears

In our industrial self-righteousness

When union shops paid living wages

And workers could afford the products they made

Until the owners closed the factories

Shipped them overseas

Replicated the conditions of early 19th century Manchester

In countries far away

Countries that have no qualms about spilling blood

In support of commerce

So that marginalized westerners who no longer have factory jobs

Can afford cheap clothes at big box stores

Ignorant of the bloody fingerprints that are sewn into each label

Uncaring that everyday low prices reflect everyday absent ethics

And a high tolerance for suffering

So we buy products we don’t really need

Made in places that we’ll never see by fingers that we’ll never touch

Not caring that those fingers lie buried in rubble

Crushed by profit margins and unleavened greed

Victimized by the impersonal message of capitalism

That values money more than morality

And quarterly earnings more than souls

 

 

David Trudel   © 2013

 

 

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5 Comments

Filed under Poetry

5 responses to “Sweatshops

  1. Doris

    you always have the right words for something so sad and so true very good!

    • Thanks Doris! It’s funny about this one, I was going to write about being a proxy for love or love’s proxy and this piece just took over.

      • Doris

        How interesting, well it is very good, and I bet the new poem will be too, they say the heart speaks to the poet

  2. Strong diction and message. Factory workers that are taken granted, you pay them respect with this poem.

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