“An Oregon resident unknowingly bought more than just Halloween graveyard decorations at her local Kmart.”

Begins a post on the Smithsonian blog.

Folded into eighth[s] and stuffed between the Styrofoam tombstones, she found a letter, written mostly in English, which said that the decorations had come from the Masanjia Labor Camp in Shenyang, China . . . .

The letter’s author described 15 hour work days, no days off and pay of around $1.61 per day. The writer said that people in the labor camp—many of them persecuted members of a banned spiritual group—often receive a sentencing of 1 to 3 years of forced labor without trial.

The note at issue was packed in a “Totally Ghoul” seventeen piece graveyard kit.  Apparently, the note fell out of the package upon opening.  Like lots of Americans, I have purchased the same kind of decorations for my home.  So, my first reaction was one of concern over my actions and the conditions in China.  Then, I remembered that I don’t believe anything I read on the internet.  Along these same lines, I have a lot of questions about the note and why this story is important now.

Perhaps the real moral of the story is that DIY decorations are always better.

Tiny tophat tip — Amy W.

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~ by siouxsielaw on December 31, 2012.

2 Responses to ““An Oregon resident unknowingly bought more than just Halloween graveyard decorations at her local Kmart.””

  1. I feel your pain. I have really fallen for too many things later reported to be untrue. I look forward to reading about your DIY decorations.

  2. I have read articles about the horrible conditions many people in asian countries works under, all for our cheap electronical products, clothes etc. I’m old enough to know how expensive clothes and electronics have been. The note telling about 15 hours work days and no days off is actually a reality for many of those people, nothing unusual at all. If they have children, they leave them by their grand parents to be able to work and send money to them, if there is anything left of their salary.

    Indeed DIY is better 🙂

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