change.org, dead cats and sweatshop labor

Check out the petition that I ran into when I googled “Etsy” on change.org’s site:

https://www.change.org/p/etsy-remove-bonehouse47-a-shop-that-sells-dead-catschan

Now I know that life isn’t all about competition, who wins and who loses mumble, mumble, mumble, jealous…mumble mumble…but people!!! this petition was about dead cats, and while I hate the thought of a dead cat, and it’s not art to put a dead cat’s head in a bottle and it’s sick and gross…there are PEOPLE laboring in sweatshops in India and China, and we can only gather 250 signatures to oppose that…but a dead cat in a jar can rack up 16,000 votes in four days??

Yes, you read that correctly.  Cats in bottles get more sympathy than disadvantaged people in sweatshops.  Perhaps I need a picture of a sweatshop in order to get more votes??

balloon sweatshop

Still doesn’t do it for you? Imagine how it feels to collapse into your bed (whatever that might be) and know that this is your life and there is no way out of this hell hole.  Ever.  All I know is that it looks like a bleak way to exist, making a whopping $1 a day.  And why? In the case of ThreeBirdNest’s wares so that some DIVA in America could get rich quick selling (her) shit as “handmade”.

Cat lovers…stay in your chairs…I love cats too.  But think about it…it is a human who is protesting a cat in a bottle.  A cat is not protesting this, nor is a cat drafting a change.org petition, nor is a cat blogging and alerting all its cat friends about making a difference.  A cat has no power to change a cat’s head in a bottle.  Humans do have that power…they have the power to question, to ponder and to make a change.  When a cat starts blogging about changing sweatshop practices in China or India, I will sit up and take notice..and revise what I just wrote.  But until then, I hold that sweatshop labor and inhumane working conditions should garner more outrage than a cat’s head in a bottle.

Oh sweet Jesus, I can feel the waves of judgment sweeping across the world and landing at my feet in little Gilbert Arizona, one of the safest cities in America.  A little la-la land of white picket fences and kindness, peace and understanding.  We don’t have sweatshops here, so we can pretend they don’t exist.  We probably don’t have dead cats heads in bottles either.  It’s a sunny, carefree existence of midsize homes, minivans and grocery stores.  Office jobs and married life and soccer games and college funds.  But from the safety of places like this, we have a responsibility to show compassion and kindness to our fellow man, wherever they are and whatever circumstances they find themselves in.  A responsibility that makes profiting off the back of human suffering really, really NOT ok.

Same old track on the same old record, but I’ll say it again. Etsy, it’s really, really not ok to sanction sweatshop labor.  That’s not debatable, especially in light of your own guidelines.  Especially not in light of the trust America put in you for showcasing “hand-made” items and promoting small businesses and craftsmen.  Get it together, before orange is the new bleak.

http://www.change.org/p/etsy-stop-overseas-importing-and-calling-it-handmade

Seriously Grace and Lace? OH NO YOU DIDN’T !!!

Oh man, I HATE it when people play the Jesus card!  It’s just so…arrogant.  Jesus has special favor towards MY store because I’m doing it for his glory.  Wow, well…I’m pretty sure that Jesus loves me as much as he loves you, Grace And Lace, so let’s put the Jesus card back into your boot socks and get real. I say that because here is ambassador for Grace and Lace Heidi’s response to an email that I sent her asking her to leave the site peacefully, as it was obvious that her items were mass produced in factories.  Remember now, this is one of the items in her store: Grace&LaceAztecAnd here is her response:  “All of our designs sold on Etsy are originally designed by Melissa herself from start to finish.”  She went on to tell me that they have really great factories that they visit often, and oh by the way, they are building orphanages and taking women and girls out of the sex trade in India.

Well that’s about enough shaming to shut me up. Except that I just did a story on these Aztec leg warmers, so I need to get some feedback from these shops:

SesameStreet85Oatmeal SesameStreet82

Remember these Aztec leg warmers?  Designed by TutuCuteLittleOnes, KnitPopShop and PeekABootSocks?

In my book, they are the exact same thing.  So they are all designed by Melissa at Grace and Lace?  This is REALLY getting confusing.  But Melissa must be telling me the truth because they visit their factories and build orphanages.  With all the money they make representing their items as handmade on Etsy.

TutuCuteLittleOnes’ store owners profile says “I love to pretty things and a variety of different styles…”  Oh yeah?  That makes no sense for starters, and I think you should really say “I love it when people buy cheap shit from China off my site.”

KnitPopShop is less subtle.  They just jumped aboard the Etsy train in November 2014, so they are struggling to their (aztec leg warmer covered) feet.  You can order 27 of these leg warmers at once.  For what reason I have no idea, but at least they are less expensive than TutuCuteLittleOnes “pretty things.”

PeekABootSocks slides in at the lowest price and calls their creations “Lil’ Alex in Oatmeal.”  Cute.  You can call it anything you want to call it, these are exactly the same thing that Grace&Lace Melissa said she designed herself from start to finish.

Just for grins, let’s go to the “bible” that all of these shops use (along with building orphanages and rescuing girls from the sex trade) – our good friend Alibaba.com.  Oh hot damn, there they are.  Melissa’s custom designed Aztec leg warmers, and you can get a really good deal there – 10 for $1.49-$2.99.  And then turn around and call them your own created design.  Right.

 Alibaba

We’re not buying it.  But sadly everyone else is.  Each shop has it’s fair share of orders, ranging from 9,000+ items to the late-comer KnitPopShop’s 327 sales.  They must be very low on the pecking order in the search engines, because Grace and Lace clocks in at $28.50 per tribal print wonder, but KnitPopShop will sell you the same thing for a mere $19.95.  Remember, each store bought these items from India’s humane factories (really Alibaba.com) for an average of $2.25 each.  I guess I’d eventually have enough to build an orphanage too ~ please don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking on the orphanage thing, it’s just great.  Good for you!  But get your China shit off the Etsy “handmade” website, because you clearly are in a state of denial if you think you designed these start to finish ~ but yet you don’t care if three of your competitors sell YOUR design for a lower price.  Really?  I smell a rat.

Sign the petition people.  These are the kinds of lies that Etsy sellers like ThreeBirdNest and Grace and Lace feed the general public and it’s time for someone to call them on their cute little stories, which are really lies masquerading as orphanage-builders and love to pretty things.  Here it is again:

http://www.change.org/p/etsy-stop-overseas-importing-and-calling-it-handmade