My photo
To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. Ralph Waldo Emerson said it; I believe it.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Made in L.A.

Still working on my son's reading list...but we did have a mini foreign language & government lesson courtesy of PBS' Point of View series this evening. The documentary film "Made in L.A. was an eye-opener for me and my son; the story follows a group of undocumented immigrants in Los Angeles' garment industry over three years. These individuals (mostly women) worked in sweat-shop conditions for a Forever 21 subcontractor; they were paid far below the state minimum wage, and in many cases worked without pay. More details about the conditions in the factories can be found here.

Although it took three years and a great deal of courage and persistence, the garment workers were eventually successful in negotiating a settlement with Forever 21. My son was especially please with this outcome. But he took away something else from this documentary; one of the key characters made a statement "I am ugly" and my son said, "she is not ugly, she probably just feels that way because when you are mistreated so long, your self esteem is taken away and you think you are ugly." He also said that I don't need to shop at Forever 21 (or any other clothing store) anymore - I have enough clothes and shoes...

No comments: