Your dollar has power; recognize your wallet has a vote
I'm really picky about my donuts. While I do favor fried dough of the sprinkled, pink variety, that's not what I mean. In my hometown, there's a wonderful family-owned business that has served donuts to the community for decades. They hire locally, treat their employees well, and will often make your dozen a baker's dozen. Then a Krispy Kreme cream moved in, right next to David. The community was outraged. News stories popped up on the local stations with residents swearing off the multi-million dollar chain. It was the buzz around town for a few weeks -- lines formed in support for the ol' ma-and-pa shop, and almost any local you talked to would voice their support for 'em. Now, a few years later, the righteousness we once felt about the power of our wallets has escaped the community's consciousness. Driving by the donut plaza yields a view of a packed Krispy Kreme drive-through. And whenever an event with complimentary dessert is called for at the local high school, the too-familiar green and red logo brands the boxes. If you asked a consumer which of these donuts they would rather support in a hypothetical context, they're likely to support the local business. However, many seem to have a disconnect between their vocal and monetary protests . I'm not using this example to make any grander point on our economic system or even the local case I put in front of you; what I am trying to do is convince you to vote with your wallet. When you refuse to patronize a business you don't like, you are making a quantifiable difference in their gross revenue. By purchasing from an alternative source, you made it that much harder for the offending company to achieve their goal of increasing capital. For example, Amazon is the subject of many ethical critiques. The Guardian reported they treat their workers unfairly and their unionization efforts1. Forbes detailed their startling amount of packaging waste2. And Business Insider did an investigation into some business practices that might be a bit too competitive, reporting that they advertise their own products on the Amazon listings of their rivals3. Listen, I get it. Amazon is convenient as fuck. If my phone charger snaps or my last pen runs out of ink, I know that the quickest and easiest way to get replacements is probably their site. However, if you have a problem with Amazon, you should know that one of the best things you can do on an individual level is refuse to financially support them. Without customers, they don't have a business model. If you continue to funnel them money despite thinking they are unethical, you are prolonging their survival as the penultimate Goliathal business and therefore prolonging their unethical actions; if you support Amazon through the quantifiable metric of the almighty dollar, one could argue you are complicit in whatever actions you don't support. I’m not saying you're evil for buying a donut. All I suggest is you critically think about where your dollar is going and what it’s used for the next time you do.
1) https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/08/amazon-jeff-bezos-unionize-working-conditions 2) https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonbird1/2018/07/29/what-a-waste-online-retails-big-packaging-problem/#eb9df86371d4 3) https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-promoting-private-labels-under-competitor-listings-2019-3
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