i know some of you may be tired of hearing me preach about this, but it's not going to stop me! when steve and i first started talking about marriage, the topic of diamonds always came up. i never wanted a diamond after hearing about the diamond trade. we had decided not to get them. So when steve proposed with a diamond, i was confused until he told me more. the diamond trade is a nasty bloodshed business, but you can find free trade diamonds. today i found a great site about conflict diamonds and an alarming video. here are some exerts
the bad news...
African nations such as Sierra Leone, Angola, and the Democratic Republic of Congo continue to suffer from the mining of diamonds. These diamonds are traded for weapons to continue wars and oppress entire communities of Africans. With an estimated 3 million deaths and almost 7 million Africans displaced, the diamond-related wars continue to affect many Africans continent-wide. Without concern the diamond obsessed global community continues to push the sales of diamonds to astronomical numbers. While there are many African nations such as South Africa and Botswana who legitimately benefit from the mining and sale of diamonds, we cannot continue to ignore those Africans who suffer daily to supply that same precious gem. With all turning a blind eye to the consequences of their ignorance, the fight for control of diamond-rich areas of some of Africa's poorest countries continues. Many of these casualties are very young children.need more? see the video here or get the ipod version.
The Revolutionary United Front (RUF) is a rebel group in Sierra Leone that uses disgusting and inhumane tactics to gain control of diamond minds (therefore control of the country's wealth). They go from town to town cutting off ears, hands, fingers, arms, legs, noses, etc. to instill fear, and enforce slave labor. In one operation, Operation: No Living Thing, they did exactly what the name said-left nothing in the town living. When the former President of Sierra Leone (later killed, still unknown by whom) asked the RUF to put down their weapons and let everyone join hands as brothers, the RUF went through a town, chopping off everyone's hands. The next morning, the President's doorsteps were piled with bloody hands.
the good? news...
first off, we have a problem on our hands, literally...a problem that doesn't take much to make a point. if you want diamonds, there are a few legitimate places to get them. The polar bear diamond is one. that's where my diamonds came from. but whether your in the store for a diamond or not, please inform yourself about them. know what you're buying, know where it came from and spread the word about this travesty.