The Dodd-Frank bill will require companies to disclose to the Securities and Exchange Commission the nature and origin of some of the materials they use in creating their products. These minerals are used much in the same way "blood diamonds" were, by strong men and rebels to finance brutal wars and massacres.
Minerals affected by the bill include the following.
+ Tantalum: stores electricity in cell phones
+ Tungsten: creations vibrations in phones
+ Tin: circuit boards
+ Gold: used to coat wiring
Congo, according to the anti-genocide group Enough. 5.4 million deaths, countless rapes and mutilations have been fueled by the country's mineral resources over the past decade and a half. The groups fighting each other, primarily in the eastern part of the country, make $180 million off the four minerals listed above.Of the countries involved in the sale of conflict materials, none has been so woefully affected as
Instead of fighting against this legislation, any of the major computer or cell phone manufacturers could come out for it. This would have few negatives in exchange for some titanic PR. Oh, and maybe fewer people would die too.
We have a request for comments in to Steve Jobs. We will let you know if he responds.
Photos from the Grassroots Reconciliation Group, devoted to helping ex-child soldiers.