I've tried, I really have, to buy local, organic products whenever possible. Not just because it's only fair to support the farmers who produced the stuff, but also because I don't want to pump my body full with hormones, antibiotics or weedkillers, thank you very much. But you know what? I give up. I now shop at the local discount supermarket because the stuff is half to TWO THIRDS less expensive than at regular supermarkets. There's no discernible difference in quality and, come on, I'm a starving student living on my own and I need to make ends meet each moth.
It's not that I don't know under what terrible, inhumane circumstances the tomatoes I buy were farmed. Just look at the south of Spain
and the related problems
. The problem is, what do I do about it? I don't have money, I don't have influence, so what can I do? No, seriously, this is not a rhetorical question. I'm all out of ideas.
And even if I were to only buy local, organic produce, recycled my trash, used energy-saving light bulbs and, idk, keep a sheep on the balcony to knit my own clothes out of its wool, would it matter? In the big picture? If everyone did it, yes. And I know, if everyone says that, nothing gets done - but that's a silly argument. Even if everybody in the developed world behaved like a good, green citizen, that doesn't mean that most people in Asia, South America of Africa have the luxury to do the same.
Also, this whole "take one fewer napkin at Starbucks and alleviate your guilt for the day" mentality seems to be very prevalent right now. "Yes, I got this cup holder at a fair trade store; it was handmade by Ethiopian widows. Now if you'll excuse me I need to get right back in my humvee." It seems that right now, being "green" is just... a lifestyle accessory type of thing you do because it's fashionable at the moment. Somehow, this bothers me more than people just being ignorant; it's like a mix between ignorance and condescending do-goodery that just drives me nuts. But then again, am I really that much better? All I've ever done that can vaguely be categorized as "planet-saving/not-exploiting-people"
related activities have come down to buying stuff with a shiny "not tested on animals" or "all proceeds go to dyslexic orangutans" label.
I'm sorry for this rambling piece of eco-guilt I've just sprayed all over your nice internet. If anyone has any thoughts on how to deal with it in a better way, or just wants to call me a leftist envirocunt, please go ahead.