Tag Archives: human rights violations

3 Things About Valentine’s Day That Are Less Fun to Criticize Than 50 Shades of Grey

My Facebook feed has been peppered with articles about 50 Shades of Grey in the weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day, and the discussion doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon. I certainly do agree that the books and movie sound like they have some super abusive content, and that they might just signal a larger cultural problem that we aren’t deal with, but I also feel like they’re just a little too easy to criticize.

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Instead of preaching to the choir about the 50 Shades series, I plan to make us all feel guilty about the part of Valentine’s Day that is much harder to address: consumerism. This post will focus specifically on the three most common gifts associated with the holiday: flowers, chocolate, and jewelry.

1. Flowers

Did I ever tell you about the job I had picking flowers? It wasn’t actually as easy as it sounds.

The organization I worked for paid by the bundle. If you didn’t cut the stems long enough, or if you included any flowers that had already started to bloom, that bunch was thrown out and you wouldn’t get paid for it. At first, I kind of enjoyed the work. It was monotonous, so I had lots of time for thinking, and I loved being outside in the sun. Unfortunately, it wasn’t always sunny. When it rained my shoes would be sucked deep into the mud. Not to mention how being constantly bent-over made my back hurt. Often, at the end of the day, I would suddenly
realize that the money I made didn’t even equal out to minimum wage. As soon as I was able to get another job, I quit.

That experience was probably the first time I started to think about the history of flowers. Where did they come from? Who picked them? How far were they being shipped? Continue reading

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Fame Day: Reddit’s Response to the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar

I’m writing this a few days ahead of time, so at this point I have no idea who’s even playing in the finals. Don’t tell me you don’t know which finals I’m talking about, either, because a) it’s one of the world’s largest international sporting events and b) it’s right there in the gosh darn title.

To stop you before you get to that particular stepping stone, I get it, Tim Howard jokes are hilarious. I agree that he is a very good keeper. Let’s not move in that direction and instead concentrate on the fact that FIFA is essentially an organization of lesser demons. There’s no way I’m going to be able to sum it up better than John Oliver, though, so here-

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