Too Precious To Wear Campaign Prompts Poignant Response
Last month, CORAL’s Director of Programs, Rick MacPherson, received an unmarked package with no return address. Inside were a coral necklace and an anonymous letter written in response to a post on Rick’s blog about SeaWeb’s Too Precious To Wear campaign, an effort to promote awareness of the destructive effects of the coral trade on threatened and fragile coral reef ecosystems. We hope this letter will serve as a reminder to others that the purchases we make can have lasting effects on ecosystems and communities around the world. Every purchase of a coral product contributes to the destruction of the aquatic species and human societies that depend on coral reefs for their habitat and livelihoods. Here's a copy of the letter that accompanied the necklace (pictured above).
February 1, 2008
Dear Mr. MacPherson,
I consider myself an environmentalist, but I am embarrassed to admit that the enclosed coral jewelry is from my personal collection. Because of the variety and abundance of coral jewelry on the market, I've been operating under the apparently incorrect assumption that coral jewelry was plentiful and unthreatened.
You can imagine my surprise after reading your blog story about threatened Red Coral and the Too Precious to Wear campaign. I was disgusted that I was proudly and ignorantly walking around as a billboard for environmental destruction.
I'm sending you my coral jewelry as I can no longer wear it with a good conscience. Maybe it can become a symbol for others to make better choices than I have. At the very least, I hope it's a reminder that you're doing important work.
An Anonymous Though Appreciative Reader