02/22/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

What To Do With Gift Cards To Non-Green Stores?

Dear Umbra,

I received a gift card this holiday season from a friend to a company which I generally avoid due to its subpar eco-practices. Since my friend has already given the money to this company, do I forgo my moral objections and use the card, or is there another way I can make the most of this generosity without sacrificing my beliefs?

San Diego, Calif.

Dearest B.S.,

Alea jacta est. Your gift card is akin to scrip. If it is not redeemed, the store will be the one receiving a money-for-nothing gift. Which is probably worse than a money-for-something purchase. Your choices are to shop wisely, to regift, to be weasely, and/or to shop under protest.

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