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From today''s New York Times

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AceP

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do you guys think the movie is having a tangible impact? it's certainly Hollywood's cause du jour...


The New York Times
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

December 14, 2006
Diamonds Are for Never?
By MIREYA NAVARRO
LOS ANGELES

MONICA GIBSON says she is not particularly political, but when she heard about conflict diamonds on an episode of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” last week featuring the cast and director of the new movie “Blood Diamond,” she looked down at her engagement ring and thought not of love but of wars and violence.



Her fiancé gave her the ring last summer, she said, and she may never find out where its 24 diamonds came from. But as the couple now shops for diamond wedding bands, Ms. Gibson said she won’t buy unless the jeweler can vouch not just for the stone’s cut, clarity and color, but also for its origin.



 

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decodelighted

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You know ... it''s so ironic, but I just saw an episode of the show "Married Away" ... and the groom was a NATIVE of Africa ... only a few years in the USA ... and HE insisted on "bling" in his wedding band. A LOT of it.

If native Africans aren''t avoiding "blood diamonds"(and yeah, yeah .. just one guy) ... should one episode of Oprah & a Hollywood film get all our panties in a twist ... remains to be seen I guess ...

And HA ... have you checked out Oprah''s own growing collection of sparklies?? GIGUNDO emerald cut drops (over 5 cts each) etc etc ... **shrug**
 

poptart

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I do actually worry about where my diamond came from now, although unfortunately I can''t change any damage that has already been done. I am glad that I know about this though, so if and when I do want to upgrade I can make an educated decision. I hope others also look into where their diamonds come from. There is so much going on in the world that we don''t even know about or care to research when really we should.

*M*
 

pricescope

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Dear AceP, please give a link to the article if you have it, pasting the whole text from the source is against Copy Right.
Thank you.
 

AceP

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Sorry about that. Here''s the link, from the Styles section:

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/14/fashion/14diamonds.html?8dpc

The reader comments are interesting - mostly rhetoric from people saying they''d never buy a diamond because of the uncertainty over the origins. Obviously these folks are in the minority, but I wonder if it''ll become trendy to conspicuously avoid diamonds in certain circles?
 

Ann

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Date: 12/14/2006 12:13:18 PM
Author: decodelighted
You know ... it''s so ironic, but I just saw an episode of the show ''Married Away'' ... and the groom was a NATIVE of Africa ... only a few years in the USA ... and HE insisted on ''bling'' in his wedding band. A LOT of it.

If native Africans aren''t avoiding ''blood diamonds''(and yeah, yeah .. just one guy) ... should one episode of Oprah & a Hollywood film get all our panties in a twist ... remains to be seen I guess ...

And HA ... have you checked out Oprah''s own growing collection of sparklies?? GIGUNDO emerald cut drops (over 5 cts each) etc etc ... **shrug**
I saw those gigantic EC drops the other day and thought this woman truly loves diamonds. They looked more like 8 - 10 each to me, but what do I know, other than they were mesmerizing. I was thinking, she is going to end up like Liz Taylor, with a collection of gorgeous jewelry and write a dang book about it. I am always checking out her diamonds.
 

mrssalvo

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I think the movie will cause some to at least think about conflict diamonds. Some won''t care and others will seek canadian diamonds or other kinds that are known to be 100% conflict free. It''s funny about Oprah, I heard her say on one of her shows that she only buys D IF too...
 

FireGoddess

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Date: 12/14/2006 2:09:03 PM
Author: mrssalvo
I think the movie will cause some to at least think about conflict diamonds. Some won''t care and others will seek canadian diamonds or other kinds that are known to be 100% conflict free. It''s funny about Oprah, I heard her say on one of her shows that she only buys D IF too...
I pretty much agree. Some people will seek out Canadian diamonds, some won''t care. Funny about Oprah though...the woman''s a great humanitarian but when it comes to herself the woman can be pretty snooty!! (evidenced by the Road Trip footage...)
 

Cehrabehra

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you really think canadian diamonds are conflict free? I''ve read that the mafia has infiltrated that - maybe people are not enslaved but I don''t know that I wouldn''t consider that conflict. When I start thinking about this I am reminded of many things in human history built upon the backs of slaves. The pyramids, sweat shops, the USA.... Idon''t know how you escape it unless you refuse to travel and do all of your own growing including textiles... Even the migrant workers who give us affordable vegetables - people suffer for the luxury of others every day and have since recorded history at *least*. Embracing it sickens me, but realistically - what escape is there of it? All you can do is make the best choices day by day and hope you have made the right ones, knowing that in most cases there *is* no right answer. Exposure of wrongdoings is certainly a good thing, but there are many other things we inadvertently encourage with our purchases every day. Do you know the source of your sweater? Your tomatoes? Do you know the conditions of those who built a particular shrine or piece of furniture? You educate yourself and do what you can.
 

FireGoddess

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Date: 12/14/2006 4:31:46 PM
Author: Cehrabehra
you really think canadian diamonds are conflict free? I've read that the mafia has infiltrated that - maybe people are not enslaved but I don't know that I wouldn't consider that conflict. When I start thinking about this I am reminded of many things in human history built upon the backs of slaves. The pyramids, sweat shops, the USA.... Idon't know how you escape it unless you refuse to travel and do all of your own growing including textiles... Even the migrant workers who give us affordable vegetables - people suffer for the luxury of others every day and have since recorded history at *least*. Embracing it sickens me, but realistically - what escape is there of it? All you can do is make the best choices day by day and hope you have made the right ones, knowing that in most cases there *is* no right answer. Exposure of wrongdoings is certainly a good thing, but there are many other things we inadvertently encourage with our purchases every day. Do you know the source of your sweater? Your tomatoes? Do you know the conditions of those who built a particular shrine or piece of furniture? You educate yourself and do what you can.
Now you've got me wondering. I wonder if the Walmart documentary had any effect. Because when I saw it.....I was so angry I was yelling at the tv. ('Walmart: The High Cost of Low Price' is the name.)
 

codex57

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Date: 12/14/2006 4:31:46 PM
Author: Cehrabehra
you really think canadian diamonds are conflict free? I''ve read that the mafia has infiltrated that - maybe people are not enslaved but I don''t know that I wouldn''t consider that conflict. When I start thinking about this I am reminded of many things in human history built upon the backs of slaves. The pyramids, sweat shops, the USA.... Idon''t know how you escape it unless you refuse to travel and do all of your own growing including textiles... Even the migrant workers who give us affordable vegetables - people suffer for the luxury of others every day and have since recorded history at *least*. Embracing it sickens me, but realistically - what escape is there of it? All you can do is make the best choices day by day and hope you have made the right ones, knowing that in most cases there *is* no right answer. Exposure of wrongdoings is certainly a good thing, but there are many other things we inadvertently encourage with our purchases every day. Do you know the source of your sweater? Your tomatoes? Do you know the conditions of those who built a particular shrine or piece of furniture? You educate yourself and do what you can.
Yup. Think too much and it can make your head spin. The thing to remember is that Americans lead a VERY cushy life. You''ve got all these people up in arms over how some poor person in Vietnam is getting 50 cents an hour or whatever. They think, how horrible! They''re being exploited. Those are poverty wages. What they''re forgetting is that even tho they have to work very hard for that 50 cents, that might be the only job in that area. They may struggle to feed their families, but the alternatives are worse.

Same with the diamond miners in Africa. Yes, it''s a dangerous job with very little profit. But we need to take a closer look at the alternatives. Why are they mining? These people aren''t slaves either based on the interviews. They do this voluntarily. If you think about it, that tells you their alternatives aren''t any better.

Sucks, but the whole world isn''t some rosy place with welfare like the US.
 

AGBF

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Date: 12/14/2006 11:54:06 AM
Author:AceP
do you guys think the movie is having a tangible impact? it's certainly Hollywood's cause du jour...
I do not think it will have tangible impact in the long run, but I'm glad you posted a link to the article. I saw it this morning and thought I should mention it here...but I've been teaching school. I can't just sit at a computer...especially when the fifth grade was having its holiday party today!

Deb
 

poptart

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I agree it''s extremely hard to know where everything you buy comes from, but if you don''t do the research then don''t be surprised if your purchases are built on the backs of the poor (as many things are). Because I actually do fear this, I try my hardest to buy antique furniture, and know where my food and clothes come from. I would rather spend a little time shopping around now then find out later I just bought a shirt that some 10 year old sweat shop worker made. I personally think it is a "Well, what can we do?" attitude that contributes to these companies staying afloat. There''s nothing more I can do than choose not to buy into it... but I have friends that do the same and it just grows from there. Hopefully one day everything will balance out, but unfortunately I think we are all just too corrupt and comfortable with our lifestyle to give up everything that we could technically do without... so we let others go without instead. As Cehrabehra said, it''s been the same story throughout history.

*M*
 

kenny

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Diamonds are a small expensive luxury item.
That makes them an easy target.
But every day you and I own or come in contact with a zillion other products that could have a history of human exploitation.

I am deeply conflicted about all this.
I really embrace the idea of fairness and equality and global consciousness.
I drive and hybrid car, and work very hard to squeeze 63 MPG out of it.
We recycle more than we throw away.
We have no AC or heating in the house. (Granted we are in So. California.)
But with only 24 hours in a day can I really research the employment conditions of every company, in every country, of every product I touch?

No.

I'm not saying don't care.
I'm just saying we all have to draw the line somewhere.

Every person in every country wants to eat and have a home.
But you have to be very skilled to get yourself born in a country with a high living standard.

If not, you may not even survive into adulthood.
If you do there is very little opportunity to achieve even a basic standard of living.

As long as here has been humans there has been competition.
As long as there have been countries there has been competition for wealth.
It is not fair but that is the way it is.

All these PC people who want global fairness will cool it when the world's wealth is equalized and they have to give up their flat-screen TV and roam the fields for food instead of buying a week's groceries at WalMart for a few hours wage form working in an air-conditioned building sitting in an ergonomically-correct chair tapping on a keyboard.

It is unfortunate we have narrow vision and short attention span.
Diamonds are the unPC product djour.
And you know what journalists say, perception is reality.

I once saw a bumper sticker that sums it all up.
"Save the planet, kill yourself"
 
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