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It is, for those who want it, essentially an extension of funerary services.

Since we've chosen to get into the t-shirt business, rather than running a funeral home, most of us wouldn't (yet) have the emotional context and experience to deal with a situation like this if we wanted to, which is what makes it so hard to process.

There's a lot of emotions to wrestle with, not least of which is the fact of applying commerce to death. There's nothing wrong with offering a paid funeral service; but it's something you have to work through to be comfortable about. You might feel like you are exploiting people's grief, you might feel like if you were to advertise such a service people might be manipulated into purchasing something that wasn't right for them in a moment of weakness. While not true, they're natural concerns. But the fact is if you treat the issue with sensitivity then all you are doing it helping someone in a time of need, and getting paid for your services (no one expects you to do it for free).
 

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Comin'OutSwingin said:
The concerns Lewis raised about applying commerce to death are very valid.
It's not actually a concern, so much as that I understand it's something most people (as Ross said, depending on their own attitudes towards death and its surrounding culture) are going to have to work through. It's why people are uncomfortable, but I don't think they need to remain that way.

Obviously if we were talking about applying unethical commerce to death that would be a whole other matter, but not all commerce has to be unethical and I'm quite sure it's not something I need to be concerned about people here doing.

Personally I think Lou should charge more than his normal rate to compensate for the fact that all memorial shirt jobs are rush jobs, and that he'll often lose a weekend to it. I think a lot of people would expect to pay a premium for these kind of last minute services, and so long as you don't go too far I think you should charge that premium.

Well... should if you want to - those offering their services in a charitable way are also making a valid choice, if that is a choice that they find personally fulfilling. I guess my point is that you should profit one way or another, whether it's with money or by feeling good about yourself (ideally you could do both).

Comin'OutSwingin said:
My respect for what a grieving person is going through is such that I can't profit from their grief. I will provide shirts all day long at cost to someone in this situation, but will never be able to MAKE money on a transaction of this nature.
I think that's perfectly reasonable. Personally I just don't deal well with the issue, so I'd probably respectfully decline the request.

The way people feel about/deal with/view death is an extremely personal and important thing. It goes beyond politics or religion - it's much more sensitive. Their own personal feelings are going to directly influence how they feel about something like a memorial t-shirt, and as such with this more than anything there is absolutely no right or wrong answers, just different viewpoints.

Comin'OutSwingin said:
So I don't consider it a moral decision, but rather simply a personal one.
Definitely. Morals aren't objective (much as we like to think our own are), so it will always be a personal decision.
 

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Squirts said:
as much as the thought and moral issues my lead me to think I wouldn't really don't want to do this order, One look in the parents eyes and there was no way on earth I could "Not" do this order...
Yeah, I could definitely see myself being exactly the same way in that situation. I say I'd "probably" decline, but I'm really not sure I could look someone in the eye and say no under those circumstances.
 
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