Fashion today, and for the last several decades, has become like a weapon used to exploit and manipulate people, especially our youth culture, as it puts pressure on one to keep up to the constant change as seasons and styles change, intimating you are not cool and cannot be popular is you are not ‘in style’ instead of a common sense approach for quality and comfort. As well, it puts pressure on parents/families to put out more money than is necessary to cloth ourselves and our dependents as the ‘in’ clothes are often over-priced to the extreme and the products that are made well/lasting are also very expensive.
What is the point of this? It is not for the benefit of the consumer, as is so cleverly suggested by advertising and marketing ploys but for one reason only- PROFIT. These manufacturers/corporations do not care about the consumers mental health or the practicality of the decision to purchase or if the article is even needed, they want you to buy more and often for the sake of moving their product and making money for the company!
I am not suggesting there can exist no enjoyment with clothing. Sure, we can enjoy/prefer a certain colour and style but to what end and to what consequence? Where is the integrity within the fashion/garment industry, where and what are the fashion/garment industries responsibilities to the consumer? We all see images of air brushed, wafer thin models looking sexy and sullen and this is implanted within our psyches on purpose to manipulate us to try to ‘be’/live up to that image. This can be devastating to a young person (or anyone) who does not fit this mold, and most do not! It can lead to misguided attempts to emulate a picture resulting in eating disorders and even suicide when they ‘fail’ or feel like they have failed, destroying their sense of self-esteem as, for whatever reason, they are not able to discern what is really important. I remember going into self-blame, self-criticism when I felt like I could not ‘look like’ the models or other girls in high school who’s parents had the money to buy new clothes for them each season at the expensive stores. I knew my mom and I got the ‘cheap knock-off version’ and I compared myself to them and came up lacking, in my eyes.
Please look at this one very clear example of what I am talking about here. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/20/fiona-geraghty-suicide-eating-disorder_n_1612940.html
Are we not compassionate enough to take responsibility for this? Do we just ‘pass the buck’ and say it’s the parents fault for not creating self-esteem within the child, or ‘that’s the way it is, some can afford the best and others can’t’ and so they are vulnerable to the point of bad decision making to their demise? Or do we tackle it head on and admit this kind of over production and marketing of fashion is exploitative at worst and unnecessary at best. Indeed, it is not what is best for our children, ourselves and the models themselves. It advocates that being a consuming robot is preferable to being a thoughtful earthling.
It is a well oiled machine that cranks out wants …dreams…ideals…yearnings…must haves…the latest….urges…
You see the finished product, well often first you see a commercial or picture/advertisement that entices you into beLIEving you are lacking this thing/product and you MUST have it. It is BIG bucks and a whole chain of psychologists, researchers, designers, manufacturers are hard at work each day to brainwash you into becoming and remaining a slave to consume fashion, as it rolls off the the never ending line.
I am not saying we do not need to manufacture clothing and footwear, of course we do. I am not suggesting we forgo style, colour or preferences. I am suggesting there is a better way, let’s get our priorities straight, as what is best for all, within this industry.
Please consider the quote below taken from the following article http://fashionmarketing-vogue.blogspot.ca/2007/02/negative-symbolic-consumption-and.html
‘The researches assert that consumers make purchasing decisions based upon the positive or negative attributes held by the products. Consumers make purchases in the fashion industry based on their feelings of self-esteem and whether a product would improve that self-esteem. And consumers avoid certain purchases in order to “protect their self-esteem.” The article explains “Symbolic Consumption” as a point where consumers give intangible meaning to material products...The *article then discusses how the marketing industry capitalizes on these positive and negative symbolic meanings and uses them to create ideal situations for positive consumption.’ *Banister, Emma N, and Margaret K Hogg. “Negative symbolic consumption and consumers’ dive for self-esteem: The case of the fashion industry.” European Journal of Marketing. 38.7 (2004): 850. 20 February 2007 .
So you are being had, wasting you hard earned cash or your parents hard earned cash by allowing corporation to manipulate you through your mind of energies-the positive and negative feelings you experience- so…are you just this robot? Or can you stand up and decide for yourself? Is this type of manipulation ‘free choice’ or is it justified coercion for PROFIT from the greed of the ones who already have most of the money on this planet-that is why they hold the power btw. Not to mention, it is a waste of the earth’s resources when products are manufactured for supposed style/fun/sport/seasonal changes and not for what is needed to clothe a population. As well, the garment industry is notoriously known for horrific/unsafe work environments and exploitation of employees; long hours, low pay, mental/sexual/physical abuse!
Presenting EMC (Equal Money Capitalism) as the Solution in the next post.
It is Time for a New World System. One Based on Prevention, instead of Reaction. One Based on Honouring the Right of Life, Equally for All.
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