Tagged: consumerism/materialism

Martin Luther King Jr On Materialism And A Revolution In Values #BlackHistoryMonth

sofreshandsogreen martin luther king jr thing person oriented materialism environment black history month quote

“We must rapidly begin the shift from a ‘thing-oriented’ society to a ‘person-oriented’ society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” –Martin Luther King, Jr.

This Martin Luther King, Jr quote has been a popular one for this site. It’s been an extraordinary gem hidden in one of King’s more famous speeches that isn’t his super famous speech although it still contains a dream. As I explained in QUOTE: Martin Luther King Jr On Environmentalism it’s been difficult to find a quote about the environment from the canon of Civil Rights Movement era heroes and sheroes. You can read about some possible reasons why there. I thought this quote was worth bringing back again on this blog though and here’s why. Continue reading

James Baldwin On The Price Of Poverty #BlackHistoryMonth

sofreshandsogreen james baldwin poor poverty expensive black history month quote

This is one of the more famous quotes from the insightful author. This quote is lifted from his essay ‘Fifth Avenue, Uptown: a Letter from Harlem’ which was published in the July 1960 issue of Esquire, among other places. As a quote Baldwin is addressing a class issue, but as with probably all class issues it is inextricably linked to race. In context with the rest of his essay it’s more clear the author is referring to something more specific to black people, The Black Tax. Continue reading

WATCH: The Classic Short Film ‘Story Of Stuff’


Clocking in at just over 20 minutes Story of Stuff manages to be enlightening and controversial. Teachers have been showing it to their students for years and some of the usual suspects made a stink about it. Some call it propaganda. According to their site:

From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view…

The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It’ll teach you something, it’ll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever. ~storyofstuff.org

You owe it to yourself to watch this and learn about were your stuff comes from and where it goes when you’re done with it. Soon there will be no excuses for not knowing. Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Why You Should Stop Recycling So Much Stuff

Reduce Reuse Recycle floppy disk notebook upcyle

It would be irresponsible of me to write that you should stop recycling, but odds are you should. The Floppy Disk Notebook above is actually an example of upcycling, which is also an option you can learn about here. Right now we’re focused on the 4 Rs. The phase to remember was “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” but now many have added the word Refuse at the end. This is because if we can recycle and reuse that means beforehand we have consumed. Continue reading

5 MORE New Year’s Resolutions You Can Make To Change Your Life

simpsons happy new year

In 5 New Year’s Resolutions You Can Make For Your Food and 5 More New Year’s Resolutions You Can Make For Your Food I outlined some resolutions you could make (or goals you could set) to usher in 2012. In 5 New Year’s Resolutions You Can Make To Change Your Life I wrote about resolutions to help you change your life…and maybe the world. Now, here’s 5 more. No more help from Family Guy though, cause let’s face it- how much longer does that show have to live? We’ll go back to the Simpsons, a show that has already kind of lived forever. Continue reading

Buy Nothing New This Christmas

buy nothing new

On a site that focuses on environmentalism I’m not going to encourage you to be a baller this holiday season. Over-consumption is a major problem in our society, as we learned in “Story Of Stuff” and in the end it doesn’t make people love you more anyway. I will tell you if you buy something this holiday season you should do it as eco-consciously as possible. Or you can just buy nothing!

A few things to remember or try: Continue reading

Reverend Billy’s Church Of Earthalujah & The Great Wikileaks Easter Egg Hunt

Photo Credit: “Rev recovers from a near-shopping convulsion” by Michael Hart

If you’ve never heard of him let me introduce you to Reverend Billy. He oversees a flock called The Church of Stop Shopping and he preaches anti-consumerism. Recognizing the importance of environmentalism, Reverend Billy, who is an actor turned activist not a real reverend, has taken up another cause. He went from Hallelujah, to Change-alujah, to, now, Earthalujah! Continue reading

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