Made in China “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
There was a time in the not too distant past when those words stood for something. The statement not only affirmed an individual’s devotion to this nation but also confirmed one’s belief in the ethics, morals, values, and principles once established that made the United States the great country it became.
Few would argue America was built on the sweat, blood and tears of the melting pot known as our forefathers. However, I cringe to think how all the races, creeds, and cultures would react to see the result of their sacrifices.
A recent quest to locate “that right pair” of the only jean I’ll wear enlightened me regarding the fact exclusive styles considered “high end” Levi’s are still produced in the United States. That prompted me to find an answer to the question: What has happened to the pride of America?
As it has happened for years, many U.S. companies are guilty of relocating to other countries in search of cheaper labor and minimized tax liabilities. Considering the benefits enjoyed by companies that stand to make huge profits buying inexpensive products and inflating the prices, that isn’t about to change any time soon. I discovered much of what we actually buy from major retailers is made in China.
To understand the extent of China’s influence, I decided to conduct a simple experiment and checked the label on products around my own home. It was only then that I realized just how much America’s position as a “formidable world power” depends on imports from China for everything ranging from computers, electronics to clothing and shoes. Many of the toys purchased for children in the United States are imported from…guess where?
Data from the International Business Times details a David Ciu report entitled “Not So Trivial Facts.” Based on economic data from just a few years ago, the report demonstrates the realistic need in that China manufactures: 320.4 million personal computers or 90.6% of all PC’s made in 2011, 109 million air conditioners or 80% of all units manufactured in 2011, 320.4 million energy saving lamps which equates 80% of those produced that same year, 21.8 gigawatts solar cell production capacity or 74% of 2011’s production capacity, 1.1 billion mobile phones or 70.6% of those manufactured during 2011, 12.6 billion pairs of shoes or 63% of all the shoes produced in 2010, 1.8 billion tons of cement which amounts to 60% of the cement produced in 2011, 5.5 million tons of pork or 49.8% of pork produced in 2011, 1.8 billion units of coal (each unit is equivalent to one ton of oil) or 48.2% of all coal produced in 2011 and 76.6% metric tons of shipbuilding capacity which is 45.1% of global shipbuilding capacity in 2011.
Consider the fact virtually every business in existence is dependent upon computers to some degree and the point that more than 90% of them are manufactured in China. The country also provides enough shoes that every man, woman, and child in the world can each have two pairs; to the tune of twelve and a half billion. Cell phones have become the technological manifestation of a human umbilical chord as they are found in places where residents of some third world countries don’t even have the luxury of running water. To think, China manufactures seven out of every ten mobile phones produced in the world as well as almost half the globe’s ships; essential for the activity of international trade.
Armed with a wealth of newly discovered information, I purposed to make a change in the effort to verifiably demonstrate an uncompromising devotion to my country. After all, is it not the patriotic duty of each American citizen to do just that? It was decreed nothing with a label depicting production from China would remain within the walls of my home. I painstakingly searched every room this past Friday making a list of all products including kitchen appliances, dishes, laundry essentials, televisions, furniture, lamps and even decorative accessories.
To make a very long story short, comparing the “Made in America” list to the pages of items “Made in China” would only allow me the ability to cook and do laundry if I kept to my word. But that would need to be done during daylight hours as even the light fixtures would be removed. After re-thinking my position and reasoning it worth being labeled a “hypocrite,” I find it just as patriotic to support our government in promotion of free trade between the two countries. I could be wrong but it’s just something to consider.