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Ethical Shorts and Socks

The appeal of the big box store is hard to shake out of the mind. This morning, as my son was getting ready for school, I realized that he needed some shorts and socks for the summer, and I immediately thought, I’ll go to Target and pick some up there…

american apparel shortsPick up kids’ clothes at a big box store like Target, Wal-Mart or Kmart, and the chances are good you would pick up something made in sweatshop conditions, in an environmentally unclean factory, in a country with an autocratic government, then shipped overseas in a cargo vessel that spews carbon and fouls the waters it passes through. So, I stopped the automatic thought of buying big box shorts, and sat back down in front of my computer.

I looked up American Apparel instead, and found that they sell shorts made in the USA, in accordance with American environmental regulations. They sell them at a pretty good rate too: 12 dollars for a pair of shorts, plus shipping. If I were to drive and from to the nearest Target or Wal-Mart, I’d pay about the shipping rate anyway.

These American Apparel shorts help my kid stay cool in the summer, and they help the American economy at the same time that they cut manufacturing and shipping-related carbon emissions. I’ve also saved myself a lot of time by ordering online – about 45 minutes in travel time. Far out.

I’m picking out a 3-pack of socks for my son too, also just 12 dollars.

I don’t work for American Apparel. I just think that they’re doing a great service by selling stuff they make in the USA – helping me to make an ethical choice in dressing my kids and myself. I’ll be a booster for them, with no shame at all.

3 thoughts on “Ethical Shorts and Socks”

  1. Anonymous says:

    yea, but America supports torture so by buying in America you are saying you agree with torture…

    1. J. Clifford says:

      That’s actually an interesting point. I think it’s more accurate to say, however, that the American Constitution forbids torture, while the current American government defies the Constitution, and so there is an ongoing struggle in the USA over torture. Many of the sweatshop countries, however, also have pretty nasty records of torture. Here in the United States, there is not the record, in recent times, of the use of torture as a technique to suppress workers. Torture by the US government has not been associated with garment factories. The abuses of the Bush and Obama Administrations do make many people less reluctant to deal with US businesses, but US businesses (besides those like Halliburton) have not been connected to tshirt production.

      1. Jacob says:

        In order for my family to get around this issue we make most of our own clothing. The small stores are many times more expensive (I know its only slight but I have 5 kids, it adds up real fast). Its almost impossible to keep up with everything is made. Heck, if I did an inventory of every single thing in my house and traced it to its place of manufactor and researched the conditions (I would be really old when I got done) I would probably find out that I am shocked about what I support with my dollar

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