“Our personal consumer choices have ecological, social, and spiritual consequences. It is time to re-examine some of our deeply held notions that underlie our lifestyles.”
It seems that I am not the only one that would like to boycott consumerism. Apparently Adbusters, a magazine out of Vancouver, is encouraging people to boycott Christmas spending. This is interesting and exciting news to me. This very magazine sparked the worldwide Occupy protests…they have lots of supporters. To them I say “right on”; this is what I am talking about and have been personally ascribing to for years. A seasonal shopping boycott at the time of year when most retailers hope to make it or break it in their business may not be received well. However, for those powers that be (government economists) to suggest that it would be a terrible blow for the economy is tripe. These are the same folks that factor in the expenditure of disaster cleanup, medical emergencies and wars as a plus to the economy. The factors that are not included in the economic equation such as natural air and water filtration, carbon storage, and habitats for wildlife are actually of genuine value to the future health and happiness of mankind. Perhaps a boycott of Christmas spending is just the thing to turn people around to clearer and more sustainable choices year round. Spending hard-earned money on things that invariably end up in the landfills is not what is truly important. In fact it promotes many of the heavy polluters and devastaters of the environment each time merchandise is thoughtlessly and excessively consumed. Christmas is a symbolic time of year when family and fellowmen share feelings of oneness with each other and the world. Time spent with family and loved ones, time spent doing acts of kindness for others, time spent helping to make the world a better place and feeling loving kindness toward all people of the world…that is what the Christmas season is about. Not spending money on merchandise randomly; this money would be better spent on food, shelter and clothing (if not within your own family to improve the life of another less fortunate family, community or country). Gift giving is okay only if the gift holds meaning. As a person who worked for decades in the retail industry I have personally witnessed the folly of mad spending for Christmas presents. I have seen everything from begrudgingly purchased gifts to post-Christmas gifts tossed off in lieu of cash refunds…totally meaningless consumerism both for givers and receivers alike. I say yes…Boycott Christmas Spending…it is a great idea and let’s keep it going year-round. Someone has to stop the madness of consumerism; someone has to think first about what is needed as opposed to what is wanted. It is time that someone was not just me and a few other conscientious souls out there. Get on board Canada…Boycott Consumerism and hell yeah while we’re at it Boycott Christmas Spending too. Spend your time, spend your heart, spend your love for mankind, spend your sense of wonder at the amazing resilience that nature has shown us so far, spend your energy to help your neighbours, friends, family, community and the world. Are you still itching to spend money? Spend it on donations to valuable and forward thinking charities that promote goodwill to all mankind and environmental sustainability.