I didn't mean to become one; it must have happened gradually. When did it happen?
It sort of came into being along with recycling and care of the earth. Perhaps it's an ageing thing (most things seem to be related to that these days) or a white Western privilege reaction?
Whatever it is and whenever it happened, there is no going back. I find myself volunteering at the local fair-trade shop in my home town in the UK whilst over on an extended summer visit. This short encounter, in which I try to make myself useful, has me talking to customers that enter the shop, speaking on the shop’s behalf at churches and manning, or “womaning,” a fair-trade stall at the town’s annual food festival.
It seems so easy over there; even if people are not interested they politely listen.
Within the last year, the town went plastic bag free. On purchasing almost anything in shops, you either pay 5p (approx 30 agarot) for a plastic bag or provide your own. Most people have their own as these 5ps add up.
This is a great idea and saving hundreds of thousands of plastic bags in waste, although I did think it had gone a bit too far when I had to huff and puff to get a suite bag for my sons suite we bought.
Volunteering to speak on fair trade had me reassessing my own beliefs about treating people fairly and justly. For me, I want it to be a lifestyle, not just a choice on a few products which have hit the headlines.
It is a challenging call, one which can slip and fade easily and quickly. I remind myself of the Bible verse I hold dear, Micah 6:8: “What is good? What does the Lord require of you?... Act justly, love mercy, walk humbly with your God.”
Thought: That is a start. That is the way forward. Justice and mercy for everybody.