Nothing bothers me more in this world than people who are disrespectful. Whether the disrespect be directed toward people, situations, other cultures, or animals; it doesn’t matter the circumstances, it is just downright rude to not take a second, sit back, and consider other people’s perspectives. I’m sure you would agree, especially if you have ever been in a situation in which people acted impolitely.
Speaking of more discourteous actions, I think it’s time to focus more on our local environment: 250 million tons of trash is generated each year in the United States alone, which means that every day the average person creates about 4.6 pounds of waste.
What could be more disrespectful to the world that we live in, than throwing trash out a car window, or on the ground, or even into a body of water? The most common pieces of litter left lying around are cigarette butts, plastic bags, paper, candy wrappers, fast-food packaging, bottle caps, 6-pack can holders, glass bottles, and plastic straws. Just take a minute and think about how disgusting that is. I mean, I get it. It’s trash, so why would you want that on your person? But at the same time, what makes people think that other people want to walk behind them picking up their trash, that they didn’t even want to hold on to for another five seconds to put in a trashcan?
It’s time for all of us to change our attitudes, and start applying the “golden rule” to our everyday lives. We need to be treating everyone, and everything, the way that we wish to be treated. When we are out and about, we should all be making an effort to clean up the environment we live in. If we don’t, then in the long run our community will be overrun with trash and Wildwood will become much less appealing. Who will want to live in, or even visit, an area that has a bunch of trash lying around everywhere?
It may not seem like such a big deal, tossing about just a few tiny pieces of trash here and there. But we need to consider who may be watching us while we carry out our actions. We are setting an example for the younger generations. Our small actions may influence a child to toss his unwanted chewing gum into the trashcan, rather than on the ground for someone else to step on. We may even be influencing fellow adults, who may have not thought about how their actions are harming our environment.
It is quite easy to locate trashcans in and around buildings that provide food services, and even department stores have at least one trashcan. Some department stores even have recycling bins located right inside the doors! So when there is trash lying around in those parking lots, there is no excuse for it.
When it comes down to it, my message is quite simple. Throw your trash away appropriately, and if you see trash that needs to be disposed of, then take care of it! I’m not saying that you have to pick up every single article of trash that you come across, even though that would be pretty great. Our actions can lead to a cleaner community, and possibly motivate others to take action as well. Even picking up one piece of trash a day is a step in the right direction.