iShould boycott Apple

by Carly Grossman
In December, 2011, a large explosion at a facility in Shanghai, China that supplies products for Apple Inc. injured 61 workers. Many other Apple employees in overseas factories are being forced to work in dangerous conditions that threaten their health and safety. Apple Inc. should be held accountable for its morally reprehensible labor practices, and it is our responsibility as consumers to see that it is.
In the past decade, Apple Inc. has become the face of new technology. Many students, teachers and parents in Scotch Plains and Fanwood own an Apple product, often purchased at the company’s spacious, gleaming stores in local shopping malls that project the company’s seemingly flawless facade.
The reality is that overseas employees who construct Apple products are forced to live in cramped dorm-like living spaces and make an average of just $1.83 a day, including overtime.
There are many safety issues in the foreign assembly lines that sometimes result in fatalities. Publications like Forbes, Fox News and The Huffington Post have reported multiple suicides committed at the Foxconn buildings in Chengdu, China where Apple products are made.
Meanwhile, millions of teenagers in America are purchasing their shiny blood diamonds – the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and other products.
“I’m surprised such an advanced company would have such primitive manufacturing standards. You don’t think of worker fatalities in 2012,” said junior Emily Miller.
A factory explosion in China in May, 2011, resulted in three deaths and 15 injuries. The cause was extremely flammable aluminum dust from the production of iPads.
According to The New York Times, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc., issued a company-wide email after the recent explosions, taking responsibility. “No one has been more upfront about the challenges we face. We are attacking problems aggressively with the help of the world’s foremost authorities on safety, the environment, and fair labor,“ said Cook.
But what is our role as consumers when it comes to corporate responsibility?
“I own all Apple products,” said freshman Bryan Buchanan. “If [Apple] did something about [the poor working conditions], I would buy a new Apple product, but until then I really wouldn’t want to buy a new product.”
How much of this injustice is our fault as consumers? It is immoral to keep buying Apple products as long as the conditions in factories are this terrible. But just acknowledging that will not halt the mad dash of Americans purchasing any item with an Apple logo on it. The only way for consumers to end the abuse is to     rid themselves of this severe Apple addiction.