It is the responsibility that comes with knowledge. The burden of awareness. Because you see, ignorance forgives man many things.
Its just like the word says, “In the days of ignorance God winked, but now he calls all men to repentance”. Repentance in this context does not mean saying sorry, it means changing your mind, not returning to the way you used to think before but choosing to follow this new particular path of thinking. It means choosing the path of knowledge & the responsibility of knowing that removes the shield of ignorance that so easily protects us from the consequences of erudite.
This all comes from recently watching a video about the coltan mines in Congo, where child labour is used to mine this mineral and the workers in these mines put themselves at high risk to mine coltan, without any protective gear and unfair wages and payments. Basically, this mineral, coltan, is mined from conflict areas in the Congo, meaning that because there is conflict in that area, the government is unable to control the export of the minerals from those areas meaning that it’s VERY cheap for multinationals to obtain this mineral. Its not only coltan by the way, it’s a whole host of minerals. Congo could very easily be the world’s wealthiest country paradoxically being the world’s poorest as well.
So these minerals, I’m going to talk about coltan in this post, coltan is mined and used in the batteries in your laptops and mobile phones and even in electric cars.
I don’t know about you but after finding all these things out, my heart went out to the families in Congo that go through so much hardship working for big corporations that pay them peanuts for the hard work they do, and in return, these corporations make billions of dollars in profits from selling their products. Yes, as you’ve probably guessed, Apple and Samsung have links to the mines in Congo from whence this coltan is mined. So as we are enjoying the benefits offered by these products, we are literally benefiting from the blood, sweat and tears of our brothers & sisters.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is my dilemma. I don’t want to contribute to the demand for these products that leaves my people in such depravity. But simultaneously, one needs these products to be able to be productive in this day & age, run a business and even sadly, take a good selfie. Begs the question…
What’s the cost of comfort?
Because whether it be the blood diamonds in Sierra Leone or the child labour in Congo, people are dying, crying and cursing to make sure that the rest of us have comfortable lives. Is it worth it though?
Stupid question, I know it isn’t, and yet people will continue to die, cry and curse for the comfort of the privileged few…right?