This episode of This American Life on the PRI network can only be described as challenging. Whether 100% true or not, it raises salient points about workers rights. Are US citizens living in a state of “ignorance is bliss.” Is our desire for the technological comforts in life worth the exploitation of others? Is it our faults as consumers for the poor conditions suffered by others?
I am not a closet liberal. I don’t believe that everyone should be guaranteed a standard of life regardless of their efforts. That said, I don’t believe that just because third world countries continually treat their workers poorly, that it should be accepted as ethically correct. Human life should be valued and respected at all costs as long as the individual(s) in question shares the same respect.
The real question I put forth is whether educators can stand in front of class knowing the paradigm in which the many of our technological tools were manufactured without having a small amount of guilt. Are we as educational institutions supporting the perpetuation of poor workers rights by purchasing technology without concern to these issues? I use these tools everyday and haven’t challenged myself to recognize this issue. Is it time I start to help right the wrong?