Blog #2: TED Talk and Second Article

1. I was very excited to refer this TED Talk to the class. The aspect of social justice in this class has really caught my attention. This talk consists of an attractive model who is unhappy with the superficiality of the modeling world. Her goal throughout the talk is to convince the audience that true beauty is not visible. She continues to say that women are given these modeling jobs solely on looks and nothing else. Therefore, the "not pretty," truly talented women in the world are sometimes looked upon by society as inferior. This directly relates to the oppression and prejudice that so many women in Fair Trade countries are subject to, either because of their race or their status in society.

2. I wish to discuss the 3rd criteria of the Fair Trade Federation entitled "Build Capacity." The definition states the following: "Fair Trade is a means to develop producers' independence. The word "independence" here interests me the most. Employers today really have no interest in our independence. They rely on other factors such as race, education, and extracurriculars on our resume. I will elaborate upon the dichotomy between Fair Trade and corporate America and how independence is treated in both.

Actual Responses

1. The act of model Cameron Russell transforming herself from a model to an "average" women on stage sums up her entire talk. Once she was no longer in an attractive dress, the number of times people look at her or approach her on the street dramatically decreases. Why is this? Why do people not consider that this woman could be one of the most amazing personalities on the planet? The answer is simple. Pop-culture. Pop-culture is a celebration of sight. Beautiful people are given more attention than the less attractive. Social justice is therefore no longer just. It is a sad and frequent occurrence. One of my favorite quotes states the following: "People do not change; they are gradually revealed." While our looks change over time, we still maintain the same internal pros and cons, highs and lows, personalities and dispositions. This should be the basis of social justice. People should be judged for the fact that we were all created, and all created equally. Our physical appearances can change, but our intrinsic right to be treated equally should not.

2. "Fair Trade is a means to develop producers' independence. This is part of the business model of fair trade. Workers are hired because they are given a chance to improve he quality of their lives. Therefore, their independence is given a chance to shine. Contrastingly, in corporate America workers are hired in a "dependent" sense. We are forced to depend on the name of our school, the status of our GPA, and other awards and recognitions that hopefully catch the eye of our employer. After we are hired, we are there to increase profit and efficiency to contribute to the economy. We work for ourselves, but only in a monetary sense. While I agree that we all need money to live, I think there should be more of a balance in corporate America which could help improve the quality of life of the people in the industry who seem to have it all but actually do not.

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