Cultural Relativism and Child Labor

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Cultural Relativism and Child Labor

Child Labor The use of child labor in developing nations is not a moral issue, it is a cultural one. International corporations should not let the moral argument or current legislation such as the Child Labor Deterrence Act (CLDA) influence how and where they conduct operations. Grounded in what appears as legitimate concern for children, proposed legislation such as the CLDA hinder the potential growth and progress of developing nations by limiting the number of corporations who are willing to set up operations within developing countries. The fallacy with CLDA and similar legislation is that they based on a one-sided moral perspective that inhibits change in developing countries by preventing
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The relative viewpoint of the culture is paramount because the only way to affect change is from within. The saying, “(w)hen in Rome, do as the Romans do” should initially be applied when dealing with developing countries whose moral norms conflict with those of developed countries until real change can be imposed. When applied to the child labor debate it can be argued that the utilization of child labor is a necessary step in the evolution of culture, society, and developing country. The most social and economically responsible thing to do is to assist developing countries by promoting foreign and domestic business development through capital investment to the point where child labor is no longer required to sustain the economy. While this is in contradiction with the common belief that child labor is exploitative or a form of indentured servitude and slavery is what paved the way for the CLDA. The CLDA, also known as the Harkin Bill would have prohibited the import of
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