Tag Archives: Justice

Why Lush Went Too Far

27 Apr

Three years ago (wow I can’t believe it’s been that long) while backpacking through Italy with my friend, Lizz, I ran out of shampoo. This was a serious, serious problem as, after almost a month of travelling with the same duffle bag of clothes, that was about the only thing keeping me from not smelling like a moldy ball of sweat and grime. I was gross.

While walking around Rome one day Lizz and I stumbled on a store called Lush, a cosmetic store with only all-natural, organic, handmade products. They also had shampoo bars, which was beyond necessary (and traveled better than liquid shampoo, FYI!).  That was my first experience with the store, but since then Lush shops have been popping up everywhere, including in the mall right by me.

I really do like their products, they smell and feel amazing, but I can’t quite say that I like Lush anymore. This week, in the front window of Lush’s Regent Street (London) shop, they decided to put on a performance as an attempt to put an end to animal testing on cosmetic products. They stuck a 24-year-old performance artist in a nude leotard on a table, then streamed a 10-hour long series (before clicking that link please be aware that it includes a very graphic video of the performance) of torturous procedures, depicting what animals go through during one day at an animal testing lab. A “doctor” in a white lab lab coat and mask stretched the woman’s mouth open, choking her with lotions and creams, sprayed contact solution in her eyes, even shaved her head. It was long, graphic and in my opinion extremely unnecessary.

Obviously I’m against animal testing for cosmetics or any other product, because I’m not a heartless monster. Obviously I don’t want to subject animals to pain or poison them or stick them in cages to be used as basically live bait. Obviously. And I don’t know anyone that agrees to animal testing either. But this bizarre and brutal performance does not help curb animal testing, it just displays really terrifying and disturbing images to innocent civilians. It puts a fear in children that stumbled across it while walking past the shop or looking online. It harms human beings and does nothing to end animal cruelty.

It was a cheap and poorly-planned publicity stunt for the company. I don’t know if I’ll ever shop at Lush again, because I’m really offended that they would subject a human being to such pain and their customers to such offenses all to prove an already-obvious point. They could have asked people to sign a petition and people would have signed it without that performance, because animal testing is wrong regardless of that.

If you want to make a difference when it comes to animal testing, check out this list (after the jump) of brands that still test products on animals and don’t buy them. It’s that simple. Hit them where it hurts, in the wallet, and don’t terrify others who don’t have their hand in what goes on with these companies. Keep this list in your wallet, and next time you go shopping skip over the bad guys. It’s as easy as that.

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Leave Paterno Alone

8 Nov

By now anyone that has switched on a sports game/ news station or turned on a computer (I’m talking to YOU) has heard about the Jerry Sandusky trial. The former Penn State coach has been charged with 40+ counts of child molestation

I recently read an article (followed by several other articles) calling for Paterno’s resignation after an incident one of his associates reported seeing involving Sandusky and a boy in the campus locker room. Paterno has said that the reports weren’t specific in nature, but he still called in the issue and did everything he was supposed to. The author of t his article admitted that Paterno and the PSU President Graham Spanier did everything they were supposed to, as far as calling in and reporting the incident to the authorities they were required to report to, but they didn’t do enough. What is enough in this instance? They banned him from interacting with children on campus, but they had no substantial evidence to back up claims, so firing him without just cause wouldn’t be legal.

The article asked, “Where was Spanier’s concern when he first heard about the investigation?” Imagine if a person you knew was suddenly exposed as this horrible monster. To say that these people weren’t concerned is idiotic. It is impossible not to be concerned in this situation, but I believe concerns shift away from the media and more towards the inner workings of your institution. Spanier and Paterno had students, family members, coworkers and friends that also need their attention through all of this. It’s silly that these days, if a person doesn’t jump up and issue  press release right away about something, they are seen as fishy or suspicious and get burned in the media witch hunt.

This article says that Paterno should be allowed to “finish out the year and step down with honor and admiration”. Well, I’m so glad that a publication is giving him that honor! Hey, Joe: don’t let us boot you out the door this very minute, let us do so in a month or two so that we can pull your name through the muck a little longer and then let you “step down with honor and admiration.” Could they be any more reasonable and caring!? I think not!

I think that Paterno is being attacked because he is the only really popular name that the media can use to attack. Here is one of the most famous coaches in NCAA history. What is Paterno supposed to teach his “kids” by resigning and (previously) firing this coach before a just and fair trial? Is he supposed to give into the media witch hunt? To step aside and let everything that the justice system of this country stands for because you run a highly publicized football program? One day some of his players will be in the professional media spotlight on their own, and I hope that through his sensible and reasonable actions that they will learn to react the same in their own situations.

To generalize Paterno’s 45-year career through one incident that has just begun to unfold in the media with a minimal amount of actual facts related to Paterno is just bad journalism. I’m so tired of the media frivolously throwing people’s names around to create a story. None of us have the full facts on how Paterno acted, and no one knows how much he knew about Sandusky, so who are we to judge? Think about it, if you knew a guy was doing something so horrible for so long, how could you not speak up? To think that he wouldn’t is what is really ridiculous. I would hope that people within my own profession would try and see things through a more logical perspective, but it seems that all sensibility has been thrown out the window when it comes to this story.

I can understand why people are passionate about it, trust me, I am too. When I first heard about the news I was in a bar with some friends, and it took a lot for me not to cry thinking about the idea that so many children could have been hurt so horribly. Passion is fitting in this instance, but through that I believe that the stronger person will be able to find sensibility in this issue of Paterno and his staff that are not accused. You don’t build a team as loved and respected as the Nittany Lions without having a strong sense of moral judgement, and someone like Paterno deserves the respect that he has earned.

So leave Paterno alone, at least until the actual courts decide what happened, not the media.