We’re people first, not buyers

“Being a consumer should not define us. In fact, we are active global citizens with far more agency than we recognize. And it’s when we collaborate that profound change can really take off.”⁠

We’re often referred to as consumers in the world but we’re people first, not buyers. This crisis might be bringing out the stockpiling instinct in many of us but it will (and maybe already has) show us that we can live with a little less. That we don’t need to buy new clothing every week. The house doesn’t need more stuff (except maybe plants and produce!). The kids don’t need more toys. The pantry doesn’t need to be so full. There’s enough. We can share more books. Loan our boardgames. Make a meal for someone else. Ask to divide up a bit of flour when all the shops are out. ⁠
We have so much more power than we believe. Collectively, in countries where it’s possible, we voted in the governments that are reacting to the pandemic right now. Are you happy with yours? Collectively we can place enormous pressure on brands and politicians to act not only on this, but on major other crises like climate change. Are you happy with how your favorite, and your locally grown, companies, particularly the big ones, are reacting?⁠

Collectively our buying decisions shape industries like fast fashion. And collectively we can all get as involved as possible in local politics which are often neglected but hugely influential. If you’ve got a little time up your sleeve – take a break from all the crazy news and look for the local leaders in your region doing good things. Figure out how you can support them now, and after this is over. Or if you want to run (we definitely encourage you too and would love it if you let us know!). ⁠

The acts of kindness everywhere are the little lights we’re all looking for. Go and be that firefly for someone else if you can, and if you need it, reach out to have one circle near you for a moment. As Mayor Lori Lightfoot said “our response to this pandemic will be determined by science and compassion, not fear and bigotry”.