talk about walking in another persons shoes. TOMS literally suggests that you do so. one for one. you buy a pair, they give a pair a way.
the TOMS shoe for a shoe thing feels more like charity than solidarity to me, as much as they attempt to get folks to feel a sense of connection with others.
can we think about why folks don't have shoes? and maybe, um, support their local shoe making instead of flooding them with these weird shoes they wouldn't normally wear?
this article makes many of those arguments. My favorite line:
“TOMS Shoes is a good marketing tool, but it’s not good aid.” She has a long list of reasons, including: “It’s quintessential Whites in Shining Armor. It’s doing things ‘for’ people, not ‘with’ people.”
the weirdest TOMS phenomena is the barefoot solidarity thing. maybe you haven't been exposed to it, but once a year they urge folks to go barefoot for a day in solidarity with folks who can't afford shoes. commercialization of solidarity just maybe? but hell, they had 1,000 events in 25 countries. wow.
am I being a curmudgeon? comments?