| Child Labor Problem = Unemployment Problem|
Apropos to our recent notes on problems of Child Labor
in India, many have asked about what is being done, and what can be done.
There's no easy solution to the problem. Many Western nations, listening to
liberal propaganda, have banned goods produced with child-labor, which has only
resulted in further impoverishment of the children. In her blog, my mother
proposes starting evening schools for working children, following some
experiments of Mumbai.
I may sound naive, but Gandhi foresaw this problem. When he advocated
job-training for children, the Indians called him casteist. Gandhi's
purpose was to impart job skills to the children without burdening them with
economic responsibilities or destroying their creative intellect. He fought very
hard to bring respect to the so-called condemned professions of India (hence the
weaving, and toilet-cleaning rituals in his ashrams). Now it is too
late for India to revert to a Gandhian way of life anyway.
How would Gandhian way would have solved this problem?
Gandhi didn't foster capitalism, great entrepreneurship, or large-scale
industrialization, but the Gandhian way provided for universal employment. If
you study the child-labor problem, it is really a problem of unemployment.
Real Jobs - pictures of hard labor
India's Street Children
Gandhi on Labor
Reaffirming an Old Policy
Several non-profit organizations have asked me if they could use our pictures of poverty in their fund-raising campaigns. I am sorry, but you may not.
I have said before that showing images of poor and destitute to raise funds is distasteful and immoral.
I enforce this policy to honor the poor people of India who agreed to be photographed without the entice of money or fame, and to honor the photographer who photographed them selflessly, just to document a space in time.
But I welcome and encourage the use of our pictures when they are used to touch people's heart in a positive way. Asha's 2002 calendar, and an exhibit in Argentina of the handicapped children are examples of this. The difference might be small to many, but it is of great importance to me. Thank you.
|(Comments Disabled for Now. Sorry!)||First Written: Tuesday, November 12, 2002|
Last Modified: 11/12/2002