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December 20, 2003

Buy Nothing Christmas

From the article "A 'Buy Nothing Christmas'" in the Vancouver Sun:

To the tune of "Rudoph the Red-Nose Reindeer":

Uh oh we're in the red, dear
On our credit card it shows
Christmas is almost over
But the debit line still grows
Shopping like Santa's zombies
Sent our budget down in flames
But all our Christmas spirit
Helped the giant retail chains

Buy Nothing Christmas is a national initiative started by Canadian Mennonites. The founder, Aiden Enns, used to be the managing editor at Adbusters, a Vancouver magazine that initiated Buy Nothing Day, an anti-consumerist campaign that takes place the day after American Thanksgiving.

Here's an excerpt from "Shop Til You Stop" on AlterNet.org:

"...there's this extremist view that you have to change everything, and that's so daunting that you end up content with changing nothing. So we say No, it doesn't have to be a systemic change. It can be a minor change. It can be as simple as choosing one store you don't go to. As changing the brand of toilet paper you use. Minor change has major impact."

What does all of this mean to those of us caught in a consumer culture? Start small. If you do give gifts at Christmas, stop shopping at multi-national retailers, and start shopping at "sweat-shop free" stores. Buy fair-trade coffee. Bake cookies. Give a donation to a charitable organization. Start celebrating the holidays instead of supporting commercialism!

Posted by tomi at 11:52 PM in Social Activism | Permalink

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