Tracy's blog

I’m Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so this blog is used to promote my writing and attract people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie. I write a lot about writing, TV, movies, jokes, and my daily life and opinions. I have another blog promoting my TV project at

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Dangers of cheap fashion/ The Trouble with Evan

Apr. 13 Dangers of cheap fashion: I found this on Yahoo news.  It’s a serious article about how when we buy cheap clothes, most of the products are made in sweatshops from people who are struggling.  Here it is:
"The Label Doesn’t Tell The Whole Story" is a series of three print ads that illuminate the danger of sweatshops and the poor working conditions that workers endure.

"To help the Canadian Fair Trade Network draw attention to the people around the world working tirelessly in unsafe conditions, we added their stories to the label," reads a mission statement for the ads.

The ‘Long Tag Sweater’ looks like a comfy hoodie you’d wear to lounge around home, but its tag draws attention to the unethical production of clothing in Sierra Leone.

"100% cotton. Made in Sierra Leone by Tejan. The first few times he coughed up blood he hid it from his family,” reads the tag. “They couldn’t afford medical treatment and he couldn’t risk losing his long-time job at the cotton plantation. When he fell into a seizure one day it could no longer be ignored. The diagnosis was pesticide poisoning. The lack of proper protective clothing has left him with leukemia at the age of 34. He has two daughters. One of them starts work at the factory next year. The label doesn’t tell the whole story."

The second image in the series relates to Bangladesh – the country that made headlines in 2013 when a garment factory collapsed, killing 1,135 garment workers and injuring more than 2,500 more. One of the major retailers operating from the factory was Canadian brand Joe Fresh.

"100% cotton. Made in Bangladesh by Joya who left school at the age of twelve to help support her two brothers and newly widowed mother. Her father was killed when a fire ripped through the cotton factory where he works. She now works in the building across the street from the burned down factory. A constant reminder of the risk she takes everyday. The label doesn’t tell the whole story."

The final image is of a cozy fisherman-style knit sweater.

"100% cotton. Made in Cambodia by Behnly, nine years old. He gets up at 5:00 am every morning to make his way to the garment factory where he works,” the tag reads. “It will be dark when he arrives and dark when he leaves. He dresses lightly because the temperature in the room he works in reaches 30 degrees. The dust in the room fills his nose and mouth. He will make less than a dollar, for a day spent slowly suffocating. A mask would cost the company ten cents. The label doesn’t tell the whole story."

Last year, Cambodian workers petitioned fast-fashion retailers like H&M and Zara to raise wages from $100 to $177 per month. But according to TakePart, worker advocates say the wages in the country never actually increased.

While the tags may seem shocking and depressing, it’s an eye-opening look at what can happen to sweatshop workers.


Here are some comments on the article:

1) If no one buys these clothes, these people don't even get paid the pittance they make - that pittance being the difference between life and death for their families.

2) While we make by comparison a monumental amount of money more per day than the people that work in these sweatshops, that does not mean we can actually afford to pay $50 for a shirt. The average Canadian family lives pay cheque to pay cheque and the only reason they have food on the table and clothes on their backs is because they can afford these cheap items made in those sweatshops instead of the designer clothes (who, btw, ALSO use sweatshops).

It doesn't make it right, but there are ALWAYS two sides to every story.

Instead of making consumers feel guilty for buying the clothes they can afford, why aren't you attempting to guilt the countries and businesses that PAY these ridiculous wages, that run these sweatshops, into making changes?
Naturelover6 :
Well said, that was what I was going to say exactly. Coming from India, where we have maid servants and are vilified in the media here for it, I know first hand that what we pay the servants enables them to put their kids in school, afford the books etc. And no it's no sweat shop; they have designated work for a designated pay and won't be asked to do or do anything other then their contract.
The Trouble with Evan: I was reading the "Secrets of the fifth estate is no more mere sizzle reel" by John Doyle in the Globe and Mail on Apr. 9, 2015.  I had to look it up.  I found a NY Times article about it:
Evan is an 11-year-old boy in Hamilton, Ontario, given to picking on other children, smoking, setting fires, shoplifting and in general being a big headache to his mother, Karin, and stepfather, Mike. They permitted a producer from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to install motion-activated cameras in their kitchen and recreation room, so tonight you can see the pair berating, accusing (sometimes unjustly), insulting, bullying, threatening and generally tormenting Evan, who sits quietly in his corner taking it.
No doubt Mike and Karin are exasperated, frustrated and worried, yet viewers, only hearing about the boy's mischief but seeing for themselves the adults' overbearing response, may conclude that Evan's trouble is at least partly Mom and, particularly, Stepdad. This couple, with a rocky relationship of their own, have evidently never met an expletive they wanted to delete, and in some of the scenes shown here they seem well -- or ill -- out of control. By contrast, Evan appears to be a role model of intelligence, refinement and stability.
My opinion: It seems pretty harsh.  I found it on Youtube.  I won’t watch it because it would get me angry and depressed.  It would be like watching Dr. Phil.
Florida teen kills: I found this crazy story on Yahoo:
“A 13-year-old boy in Florida fatally shot his 6-year-old brother, wounded his 16-year-old brother and then killed himself on Wednesday during an argument over food, authorities said.”
Pregnant newscaster: This newscaster was pregnant and was wearing maternity clothes that a lot of viewers didn’t like.  She read some of the hate mail she got from them.   They even quoted Taylor’s Swift’s song “Shake it off” and they lyric “Haters are going to hate, hate, hate.”
It’s not that original of a lyric.  Does anyone remember the girl group 3LW?  They had a single called “Playas gonna play”.  A lyric was “Haters are gonna hate.”
Here’s 3LW video:
Here’s a Youtube comment:
xxmusicxxaddictedxx 5 months ago : And Taylor swift thought no one would notice
Ryan Phillippe: I’ve been watching his new TV show Secrets and Lies where he plays a family man who finds a dead boy.  He becomes a suspect.  I did find this article interesting:
He may be 40 years old but, according to Ryan Phillippe, he still often passes for a kid. The "Secrets and Lies" star recently confessed to Variety that he "constantly" gets ID'd because people think he's under the legal drinking age. "My daughter hates it," he said of 15-year-old Ava (his daughter with ex Reese Witherspoon). "Because sometimes people have thought I'm her brother, and she's freaked out by that."



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