When faced with an overwhelming problem, the kind that seems impossible to solve, it is easy to give up. Give in. Say that maybe our efforts aren’t worth the energy, maybe things will never change anyway.
Maybe there is a place for that (somewhere).
Although I’ve thought about quitting this thing during particularly discouraging moments, I know that place isn’t here.
A couple of years ago, I was challenged to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.
Do you know who cannot speak for themselves? Who has most or all of their decisions made for them?
Children, that’s who.
Children are often the secret to keeping prices low when the demand for cocoa soars. They are abducted, deprived of education, and given hazardous chemical and machetes with which they can not help but end up seriously injuring themselves (some are so small that they cannot cut through the necessary paths without cutting themselves).
This is serious business- this kidnapping of children and not paying them and treating them as if they are not people. In 2004, a reporter was kidnapped while working on a piece about the chocolate industry. He has not been seen since.
Children are the secret to quick cash flow for parents who are desperate, very poor, and believe they will see their children again one day.
They have never tasted the chocolate they risk their bodies, minds, and childhoods for.
They are kept in slavery through intimidation and beatings so that you and I can buy chocolate at a price you and I are happy with.
Knowing what we know now, how many of us are truly happy with the cost of producing it?