American Imports, Chinese Deaths

“The patients arrive every day in Chinese hospitals with disabling and fatal diseases, acquired while making products for America. On the sixth floor of the Guangzhou Occupational Disease and Prevention Hospital, Wei Chaihua, 44, sits on his iron-rail bed, tethered to an oxygen tank. He is dying of the lung disease silicosis, a result of making Char-Broil gas stoves sold in Utah and throughout the U.S. Down the hall, He Yuyun, 36, who for years brushed America’s furniture with paint containing benzene and other solvents, receives treatment for myelodysplastic anemia, a precursor to leukemia.”


This is a scary, sobering article. It was brought to my attention over at Digital Media Thoughts, and we had a little discussion about it there. The question is, what do we do about it? Can we avoid products made by the companies who treat their workers this way? Even if you boycott a certain product, unless you write a letter to the company explaining why you’re not buying their product, they’ll probably just think they’re not marketing it enough.

This is what happen when a country has a population of 1.3 billion people, a government with a voracious desire to modernize at any cost, and no Judeo-Christian history that speaks to the value of human life. Life is disposable to a culture like that – although it’s not like some of the conditions in North America are much better. A read of Fast Food Nation (an eye-opening book) tells us that. Greed is the real problem here, like it always is. What else is new?