CLOTHES KILL

                        by M.Y. Smith, UK

You can now drive for miles on dust roads 
that were once part of an abundant seabed, 
rich with life. The Aral Sea is gone, along
with the communities of fishermen, who  
thrived on the shores of this disappearing 
Sea.  A robust way of life, destroyed by 
factory farming mountains of 	unnecessary 
clothes, for the entitled rich living in 
ignorance in the wasteful western world.

Now, there are giant industrial units, where  
the making of millions of unnecessary pairs 
of cotton jeans consumes life giving water. 
Every pair weakens the sustainability of life 
on our planet. Toxic chemicals kill essential 
river life. Families are forced to drink noxious
water, breath polluted air, wash their clothes in 
effluent. A slow death begins with a rash on 
their skin, harming the children most of all.

I begin to ask, how many tee-shirts, pairs of 
jeans, dresses do I need?  How many clothes 
hang unused in my wardrobe? I am moved to 
stop buying more. I may never need to buy 
another item of clothing, even from a charity 
shop. Piles of unused clothes poison children 
on landfill sites in poor areas, around the world. 
They are toxic to make, toxic to break down.
We are killing people. We are killing the Earth.


Inspired by Stacey Dooley’s programme investigating the ‘fast fashion’ industry.

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