Any small step towards greening should be appreciated, that was the principle I follow; thus, I shun from belittling efforts of neither individuals nor groups, neither private nor commercial.
Any small step is a good step towards the right direction: a shove, a push towards the tipping point of the eventual "greening" of our society.
One would know the eventual "greening" state of the society when:
1) People no longer need convincing via any media that they should go live healthy and earth-friendly lifestyles. Acts of green will already be in the subconscious, hardwired, integrated, commonplace, nothing of the extraordinary; finally taking the place of "normal behavior."
2) People living green lifestyles are the "normal people," no longer tagged as extreme, hippies, activists, idealists, and off this world; and instead, those who persist in wasteful or careless living will carry the tags of : non-conformists, radical, rebels, lost, and the uncaring.
3) Products and stores carry mostly the healthy and earth-friendly variety because they are the ones which sell. Consumers demand them; and thus, marketers and even producers, manufacturers and farmers are compelled to respond appropriately.
4) Government responds through legislation to start:
a) banning both the already proven and the merely questionable harmful chemical ingredients;
b) strictly requiring full ingredient disclosure on product labels
c) giving tax incentives to green efforts
d) funding research on the full effects of the thousands of synthetic chemicals in use currently
The Green Tipping Point is, as Malcolm Gladwell would have defined it, is that point in time when the general society has taken on "green healthy living" as the standard way of living, a major or phenomenal change just over a verge. The Green Tipping Point is brought about via a process of epidemic swelling, carried by an unstoppable momentum brought about by people--- one or a few, at first, making small but incendiary sparks of "green” decisions and actions, that eventually lead to cultural, sociological and economic breakthroughs.
Greenwashing, on the other hand, is the indiscriminate, hypocritical, and deceptive practice of claiming one's self as earth or environment-friendly through labels and advertisements, in order to gain market approval or success; while facts can prove otherwise. Commercial companies are the main culprits; but some individuals and groups who are after fame and good esteem are also offenders.
I am compelled to blog on this as I just got a good sampling of what it is: I saw kids, so blamelessly unknowing, parade on the catwalk wearing trash. I once blogged to announce a fashion show that claimed to promote the green living principles, Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle, believing it was a very commendable undertaking and thus, worth looking into.
I did go to see it. I would like to regret doing so, but I would not have gotten this insight into greenwashing and its depravity, had I not attended. While, yes, mention was made of the 3Rs (all said in one or 2 sentence/s); and yes, the supposed fashion apparels were made of trash; clearly, however, at least to me, the event was organized for purely commercial gains. The display cannot convince anybody of the virtues of the 3Rs because the material remained trash-looking, not wearable, not acceptable, and not usable at all, breaking into shreds as they walk!
It's so commercial, because most of the materials per cloth item used carry a particular brand name exclusively. Most materials seem unused, too; but made to look reused and recycled, only for the purpose of subscribing to the theme of the show. Emcee commentary, likewise, did not fail to mention the brand the wrapper or box is of.
Baser to me, still, is the use of children (probably from 4 to 8 years old) to strut the unwearables. A few of the kids were showing signs that they were not very pleased of or at least, don't know what they were doing: some looking lost, some grumpily trudging along, some evoking mature poses and facial expressions. I pity the parents, more so, the children.
I will not post the photos to protect the kids.
Any small step taken towards a greener, healthier and happier earth is appreciated and I shall continue to post about them; however, I shall be more careful not be a victim of greenwashing.
I shall continue to help push our society to that Green Tipping Point where even small steps matter and could serve as the virus to the societal epidemic of good change.