I just finished reading Rachel Held Evan’s book A Year of Biblical Womanhood. I could go on and on about what I loved about this book, and I will on my blog after my server is back up and running, and I stop acting like my 2-year-old because it has been down for 5 whole days (!!!), but I digress. There was one particular part of the book that really stuck out for me.
She did a bit of research and found that the majority of the world’s cocoa beans (Hershey’s, Nestlé, Mars) come from West Africa where there are terrible working conditions and child slavery. Over a quarter million children work on these cocoa farms. They get there by means of kidnapping, and once there, they are often abused. She came to an important conclusion, “The coffee-and-chocolate experiment forced me to confront an uncomfortable fact to which I suspect most Americans can relate: I had absolutely no idea where the majority of my food came from” (234).
Well. That was going to be problematic for me. I have back-up stashes of chocolate to eat when I polish off the back-up of my back-up stash. Mike knows to stop on his way from work if I am nearing the end. More often than not, I buy a bag of chocolate chips with the intention of baking, and I just eat the entire bag on its own instead. I sneak chocolate in other rooms so I don’t have to share with my kids. And now I am finding out that the small fortune I spend on my addiction is actually paying for something I am fundamentally, morally and emotionally opposed to with the same vigor with which I love the cacao tree? Shoot.
I had to make a change. With how much chocolate I eat, and how much I wax lyrical about being pro-life, the two just weren’t adding up anymore.
You see, being pro-life isn’t just about saving babies in the womb, it is also about desiring a certain quality of life for people already born. It is pro-LIFE, not pro-just babies. So, I made a pledge to myself to be more conscious of where my chocolate comes from (as well as look into other foods and goods I consume). Luckily, I live within walking distance from a fair trade shop that has a large and delicious selection. So far, Divine Milk Chocolate is my numero uno.
And, maybe it costs a bit more money, and that means I have to cut back. But, as it has been said, “when you know better, you do better.”
Copyright 2013 Jenna Hines