Despicably Shameless And Minion Made
The minions – short, yellow, subhuman little workers who enjoy being abused, and don’t need to be paid, or even fed, by their megalomaniacal boss. How much cuter could they get, right?
What’s not so cute is the reality of Minions merchandising. Minion goggles that last for a day or two before falling apart, Minion bouncy balls that end up getting lost underneath a couch before a week is through, Minion party banners that are taped up for a couple of hours before being thrown away, Minion temporary tattoos that wash off in the bath before bedtime, these are all provided by Unique Industries, a distribution company in Philadelphia that sells to stores like WalMart.
These labels to all these products proudly declare that they are “minion made”, which would be adorable, if it wasn’t so pathetically true. Minion Made products from Unique Industries aren’t made in the United States, under labor laws that protect workers, and environmental laws that protect the planet.
Instead, Unique Industries Minion Made products are produced in factories in China, where the costs are kept low by an authoritarian regime that denies workers the right to organize to improve their condition, allows factories to engage in massive releases of environmental toxins, and uses prison labor to keep wages down.
The real life minions in these Chinese factories don’t laugh and cheer when their bosses abuse them. They don’t enjoy living on next to nothing. Americans might not be able to understand the way that they talk, but they don’t make cute squeaky noises when they are suffering. They’re real people, driven to work in terrible situations, living under an oppressive dictatorship, and Unique Industries profits from that. It’s so much more efficient than employing American workers.
These factories in China are just like Despicable Me, except without the jokes, and with cruelty wiped clean of its cartoonish veneer… so that American kids can have cheap, disposable favors for their parties.