It’s no secret that many products that we buy each day are manufactured in other countries. There are many good reasons why Americans would want to buy goods made elsewhere. However, there is a downside to purchasing goods that are not made in America. While there’s no easy answer to the question of whether or not we should buy in America, there is a lot to consider when you choose to buy any product with your hard earned money.
Pro: You Are Supporting American Workers
No employer is going to build a factory when there is nothing to be made. If people won’t buy a product, there is no reason to spend the money to produce it. When a consumer buys a product that is made in the USA, that means that an employer will have incentive to build factories and hire employees in America.
You should also consider that many American companies are small businesses. When you buy a tractor from a local tractor company, you are helping a member of your community thrive. When you purchase fruit from a local farmers market, you are helping a member of your community thrive. Therefore, you should attempt to buy at least a few products each year that are made in America.
Con: American Made Goods Are More Expensive
Employment standards in other parts of the world are not as stringent as they are in America. There are rarely any unions or high wages to pay in China or Bangladesh. The higher payroll and benefit costs are going to be passed on to the consumer in the form of higher prices.
In a down economy, people are going to be searching for the lowest prices on the things that they buy each day. Consumers don’t worry about a product being made in China if it means that their kid will have something to wear to school.
However, American made goods are generally of a higher quality than those made in other parts of the world. This doesn’t change the reality that people want to buy goods that cost the least amount of money.
Pro: The Money Stays In America
The American made product that you just purchased is going to support an American company. That company is going to hire more workers and invest in America. The tax revenue that is generated when a business makes money will go toward hiring more policeman* and firefighters. In turn, they will spend more money in shops, restaurants and other local attractions.
This means that the money is helping to build a stronger America. Parents who have jobs can help their children pay for college. A highly educated workforce is going to produce more for employers as well as develop technologies that will help America continue to grow in the 21st century. When they have kids, they will then be able to send their kids to college because they will have the money to do so.
Beyond that, people with jobs can buy homes, cars and other consumer luxuries. As companies see higher sales, they will hire more workers. It is an upward cycle that will help a lot of people move up on the social ladder. Those in poverty now can move up to the middle class. Some in the middle class can then move up to the upper class. This is all because someone decided to buy an American made product.
Con: Foreign Products May Be Built Better
America has long been a leader when it comes to cars. However, they are lagging behind in the automobile sector these days. While other countries were building cars that got better gas mileage, American companies were building SUVs and other gas guzzling cars.
In other words, Americans can be stubborn. Unfortunately, companies have no choice but to meet the demands of the customer in order to make money. Therefore, they risk making products that may lag behind because there isn’t an incentive or priority on innovation.
This means that you could be purchasing a product that could be built much better for the money being spent on it. While buying a product simply because it is American is a noble thing, consumers should be demanding that American companies start looking to the future as it comes to certain products such as cars.
Buying something that is made in America can be both a good thing and a bad thing. The good news is that you are helping to build a stronger nation economically. Another good thing is that the money that is being spent will stay in this country to help the people of the United States. The downsides to that are higher prices and the potential for an antiquated design on some products. However, the chance to help your country grow and get stronger is certainly worth the extra money that you may pay for a product.
*Law enforcement agencies may require additional training.