This is a topic I could honestly go on about for hours. I’m not sure exactly when it started, but it definitely got a kick in the butt when I went vegan 4.5 years ago. I was vegetarian for about 8 years before that, but it really was veganism that made me a lot pickier about who I’d give my money to and what I’d spend it on.

It started with examining the labels of everything for animal ingredients, and then as I ran out of household cleaners or whatever, I’d research to find something that wasn’t tested on animals. This led to a greater awareness of labor issues and environmental issues, and where I stand now is that all of this is connected. You can’t be concerned about the treatment of workers if you are not concerned about the toxicity of the goods. You can’t be concerned about the animals if you are not concerned about protecting the environment they live in. And hey, we live in it too. How can we be concerned about the future at all if we’re not concerned about the environment?

So, yes, I think a lot about what I buy. I have watched The Story of Stuff many times, and end up feeling very strongly that we need to consume less, and so I search out thrift stores and people remaking things into other things.

I have ideals, on top of my ethics, I suppose. They can’t always be reached, but I do think it is important to always try. I write companies and complain when I am annoyed with them for not paying attention to the things that I feel are important, and I also write when I am pleased that they do pay attention to the things that are important.

I’ve watched Manufactured Landscapes, which puts a whole new picture and perspective on what I already vaguely knew was happening in the world. A picture is worth a thousand words, but I think that the pictures in Manufactured Landscapes might be worth a billion words. Maybe even 7 billion.

All of this is actually a lead in to introducing a new blog that Sorrow and Miss HarleyQuinn have started. I hope they keep going – I know what a lot of work it is to research these things and to keep on top of the changes that companies make, usually without letting their loyal customers know.

One way to vote for change, after all, is with our pockets. Especially in this capital driven world, sometimes the only voice that companies listen to is of the bottom-line. Every vote against that bottom-line counts, that’s what I believe. And it is one way we can “be the change we want to see.” It isn’t activism, not quite, but it is at least conscious consumption. They say ignorance is bliss, but having come from ignorance to a place that sometimes feels like too much knowledge, I would still say that I much prefer to not be ignorant of what, exactly, I’m supporting with my change.

tempest toy