A friend mentioned that she’d been to Grand Canyon and was horrified at the amount of litter that was lying around. Tourists think it’s cool to fling their soda bottles and fast food bags over the rim to see how far down they’ll go. She reminisced about the “Don’t be a Litterbug ” campaign we watched every single day on TV as kids.
There was a stigma to being a “litterbug” and picking up trash was ingrained in our minds. I’ve been noticing more and more trash on the roads lately and replied that we seriously need to bring that campaign back.
As Girl Scouts, we were always taught to patrol our campsite and leave it cleaner than when we arrived. Is that such a hard concept to grasp? What amazes me is when you go to an event like a fireworks display, parade, or sporting event and afterward, the area turns into a garbage dump.
Doesn’t anyone know how to use a trashcan? What’s even more alarming is to see a mother deliberately toss something on the ground right in front of her own kids or leave a dirty plastic diaper sitting under a tree at the park. YUCK!
For a while, I lived up in the hills of Woolsey Canyon, which is a nature area. There’s a lookout point on the road where people park at night to neck and gaze at the valley below. Every single morning, beer bottles and trash are left lying on the ground. It’s amazing how little those clowns care about taking care of the environment.
Just one cigarette tossed onto the ground could start a fire. (And it did in 2018)
For a while, a high school class showed once a month at the lookout to clean it up but I think they gave up.
California has made some headway in its effort to reduce the amount of trash that’s tossed by banning plastic bags and having supermarkets charge for paper ones. At first, people were angry that they were forced to bring their own shopping bags, but they’re slowly getting used to it.
Most of us are now storing reusable shopping bags in our car and it’s made a huge impact. We can still use the store’s fruit and vegetable plastic bags but they’re made of recycled materials that eventually dissolve.
The sanitation department gives most residents in Los Angeles a set of 2-3 trash cans to be used for specific purposes. Black is for regular garbage, blue is for paper and recyclables, and green is for plant waste.
Another disgusting human habit is when people don’t pick up after their dogs. That’s litter too and can cause disease. If you have a dog, carry disposable dog poop bags with you. It’s that simple.
Let’s bring back the “Don’t be a Litterbug” campaign – encourage others to follow these tips:
- If you go on a picnic or are eating somewhere outdoors, use reusable plates, utensils, and food storage containers. Pack them in a picnic basket or large reusable bag.
- It’s important to carry a bottle of water with you so you don’t get dehydrated. However, there’s no reason to carry a plastic water bottle. There are wonderful thermal bottles available that will keep your beverage hot or cold. You can even leave one in your car because it won’t heat up and change the chemical makeup of your drink.
- Attach doggie bags to your pet’s leash in a little pouch (with Velcro) so you always have a bag when you need it. Dispose of your pet’s waste properly.
- Purchase a “Don’t Be a Litterbug” sign and put it on your lawn to remind your neighbors to pick up after themselves.
- If you see someone drop trash on the ground, remind them that they dropped something.
- Carry a trash bag in your car. If you’re in an area where a litterbug has struck, pick up at least some of the trash and dispose of it. It’s good exercise.
Please don’t be a litterbug and keep America (or anywhere else you live) beautiful!
How do you feel about littering Please leave a comment below.
Teach your children well!