If you are unfamiliar with Annie Leonard and The Story of Stuff Project, all of her movies are well done. She and her team have done a great job of communicating big ideas in easy to digest films that even our kids can follow and enjoy watching.
I am very excited about their latest movie, The Story of Change, because it feels like this will really get the ball rolling. For the past few years she has worked to educate people about the consequences of our choices as consumers, tackling general Western habits, as well as, specific products like bottled water, electronics, and cosmetics. Her philosophy exactly mirrors the tagline around here: Learn. Choose. Change. And while she is quick to point out we all wield a certain amount of power as consumers, she also places heavy responsibility on our government to have better policies in place to protect the health of our citizens and our resources.
The Story of Change outlines the three components to every significant movement of the twentieth century: big idea + commitment to work together + action. After watching the movie, you are encouraged to take a quiz to see where your strengths lie regarding taking action. Although it reminded me of a "spiritual gifts" tests from church, or even the "What kind of teacher are you?" quizzes from college (both of which I always found a little off-putting), this quiz is pretty straight forward and my results were spot on, even suggesting action items that I have already done in my community.
There is also a good-sized forum where people suggest ideas for taking action. These range from huge tasks like overturning Citizens United to smaller jobs like organizing a clothing swap. It is very encouraging and inspiring to see the enthusiasm of others around the topic of consumerism, and I am looking forward to the changes that come out of it.