Saturday, November 24, 2007
Crucifixes allegedly made in sweatshops ByDavid Freedlander
St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Trinity Church pulled crucifixes from their gift shops on Tuesday after stunning allegations that the items are produced in Chinese sweatshops. Officials from both churches vowed to keep the
wall crucifixes off the shelves while they investigate, as the faithful and religious thinkers alike expressed dismay at the moral implications of the allegations.
Charles Kernaghan, the executive director of the Na- tional Labor Council, the advocacy group that released the report, called on St. Patrick’s “to move immediately, decisively and with compassion to clean up the factories and to guarantee that the rights of workers are firmly respected.” The report alleged that the crucifixes, which mostly feature the figure of Jesusattached to a wooden or metal cross, come from a factory in the Guangdong province of China where young women, some as young as 15, work more than 90 hours a week for a little more than 26 cents an hour, less than half of Chi-
na’s meager minimum wage. Kernaghan said facto- ry workers snuck out evidence and gave it to the labor group.
Kernaghan added that the crucifixes, which cost as little as $1.40 to produce, are sold in church gift shops for $17.95. “That’s a markup that would make even Nike blush,” Kernaghan said. The archdiocese said that it was investigating the mat-
ter, but accused the labor group of trying to embarrass the church. “This individual did not contact us prior to using the
cathedral as a stage for a press conference,” said Joe Zwill- ing, archdiocese spokesman. “I think he was trying to ex-
ploit the cathedral.” The crosses detailed in the report come from the Singer Company, a Mt. Vernon-based “inspirational
jewelry” concern. “We are not a Nike or a big corporation that can inspect ever single factory,” said Gerald Singer, presi-
dent of the company. “My God, making religious ob- jects in a sweatshop, that’s the last thing we need.A member of a labor group holds up crucifixes that were allegedly made in Chinese sweatshops and sold
in churches such as St.Patrick’s Cathedral. (Jefferson Siegel)
Friday, November 23, 2007
1. Did you go elsewhere for the day, or did you have visitors at your place instead? How was it?
-We usually go to BL's aunt and cousin. Her aunt if a fine cook and her cousin trained in France. Alas, due to my illness, we stayed home. After dinner a couple of friends dropped by.
2. Main course: If it was the turkey, the whole turkey, and nothing but the turkey, was it prepared in an unusual way? Or did you throw tradition to the winds and do something different?
-Turkey Breast-Roasted, Sweet Potatoes. Squash, Peas. That's it. Beloved cooked, very nicely. Not being able to eat dairy sucks!
3. Other than the meal, do you have any Thanksgiving customs that you observe every year?
-Just visiting Beloveds family. Although I have gone to the Macy's parade...once.
4. The day after Thanksgiving is considered a major Christmas shopping day by most US retailers. Do you go out bargain hunting and shop ‘till you drop, or do you stay indoors with the blinds closed? Or something in between?
-If I have the day off-I wouldn't have had it today, but, you know...gall blader-I'd be shopping. I'm going to try some shopping today, with my godchild, but in NYC, walking is-well-a marathon. So we'll see how it goes.
5. Let the HOLIDAY SEASON commence! When will your Christmas decorations go up?
-We're very low key on Christmas decorations as Beloved is Jewish. Usually a Menorah and some dreidels. We got married in a synogogue and our ketubah says that we will celebrate Jewish holidays. Occasionally I'll get a wreath or some lights for our 11th floor window. ( I celebrate Christmas, too! and Beloved has learned some traditions.)
Monday, November 19, 2007
I was reading another blog and suddenly my past flew before my eyes, a painful chapter, but closed now. Here... you read it.
I play the character of "my lover at that time" and "the same lady."
Karen said, "Today is our 20th anniversary.
This past weekend Stone that Flows was having an open studio/moving sale. The studio is located in Hanff's Boatyard, right across from Brewer's Marina. That marina is quite pivotal in our relationship. It's where we first met.
Lori came to Brewer's to meet my lover at that time and me on our sailboat in the marina. She was dragged along for the visit by the woman I was seeing and her ex-lover and housemate. The visit was quite awkward, and I was glad when they left. That was the summer of '86.
The same lady introduced Lori to our local Conference for Catholic Lesbians group the following spring. I appreciated Lori's sharp mind and good looks, and when I was free I asked her out. The date of our first dinner together was November 14th."
No, you're not blinking when you saw, my lover and the woman I was seeing at the time in the same sentence. Not both the same person, two of us.