Toss it and hoof it

I saw this editorial in the Chicago Tribune this a.m., and just about threw my arms up and cheered out loud. A Chicago Alderman, Howard Brookins, Jr. — AKA my hero — is proposing to increase the max littering fine to $1,500 and if the litterer is 16 years old or older, the max fine kicks in — and the car gets seized.

litteringAmazing. You want to dirty the streets? Walk them, then!

I also have zero tolerance for littering, and can’t control my reflexes — physically and verbally — when I see it go down. Below is a semi-recycled post, inspired by this zero-tolerance-for-littering idea.

I’m so sick of driving down the road and seeing McDonald’s bags, shoes, napkins, plastic bags and other various items drivers didn’t want in their cars anymore, so they chucked them out of their window for someone else to take care of. Not only is it trashy — in every sense of the word — and devastating for the environment…it’s lazy. And, totally disrespectful to people who share this planet, country, state, county, city, town, neighborhood with you.

Oh — and that’s just the stuff I notice while driving. When I’m walking places, I notice pens, straws, hairties, wrappers, socks, paper…it’s just ridiculous.

And it pisses (can I say that?) me right off, quite frankly.

Yes, I drive a vehicle. Yes, I know I’m emitting CO2. But, I never, ever litter. I will chase down a napkin that got away and is now blowing in the breeze. And, I shoot litterbugs the dirtiest looks you can imagine and one time — I got out of a car to hand someone’s litter back to them. And, when they (nobeacht surprisingly) didn’t take it, I threw it out for them while they watched.

I see absolutely no need to ever litter. Ever.

I’m also sick of seeing cigarette butts (haha, butts) strewn about the ground in some places. Yep. Cigarettes are litter. Carry your damn cigarette inside and dispose of it properly. People have children and dogs who pick things up off the ground and think that thing should also go in their mouth. No one should have to pick up after your habit. It’s soo incredibly gross seeing cigarettes on a beach. Nothing says “relaxation and vacation” quite like getting someone’s cigarette butt stuck between your toes.

I think litterbugs need to get called out by people who witness it, even if it’s a first-time offense, and even if the person who calls them out is walking with them or sitting right there in the same car.

Or, sitting in a police vehicle.


5 thoughts on “Toss it and hoof it

  1. Just don’t pick up any bottles of soda you find laying on the ground…especially if they’re full of yellow liquid. That’s how truckers last long hours on the road 😉

  2. Responding with a big AMEN from my mouth. Last Saturday, I went to Friendly’s. The parking spot next to where my dad parked had trash everywhere- Wendy’s bag, McDonald’s sandwich wrapper, McDonald’s dirty cup, napkins, etc. You probably have the picture in your head now. That’s why most businesses have trash cans in front of the entrance: to deposit your disgusting litter. Why can’t people clean up after themselves? 😦

  3. One night, a colleague and her husband were out for a walk and waiting to cross the street at a light. The driver in one of the stopped cars threw his cigarette butt out the window. Her husband picked up the butt and tossed it back in the car.

    I still smile (and cheer, internally) thinking of that story.

  4. I feel the same exact way. I will never understand how anyone think it’s OK to leave their trash around. Last year when leaving the SPAC parking lot the car in front of us, from the lovely state of New Jersey threw a ton of bottles out of their car. We weren’t moving so I got out of the car, grabbed their bottles and said “Here, these must have accidentally fallen out of your car because I’m sure you wouldn’t intentionally litter in this beautiful state park.” Then I told them to have a safe drive home. Not one person in the car said a word to me.

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