Current mood: disgusted
I'm so ticked I don't know quite where to start. It started with church, which occurs in a building which, the rest of the week, is a public school. The school has placed several large, prominently labeled blue bins next to many of the trash cans in the school. Many, but not all. Anyway, at church, we hand out cans of soda pop free of charge. About 1/3 of these end up in the recycle bin. Another 1/3 end up in the trash can inside the building that doesn't have a recycle bin, and the rest end up in the trash can outside, which also lacks a recycle bin. I can deal with this easily enough. I just visit the trash cans after people clear out, yank out the cans, and put them in the recycle bin. Sometimes I even get help!
But that is not the whole story.
On Friday, my daughter's purse was stolen at school, which happens to be in that same building. School administration was notified and a search ensued, but it remained missing. Since I was up there this morning, though, I conducted my own search for it, namely by doing some serious dumpster diving.
Nope, no purse, but I was astounded by the amount of recyclable cans and bottles I saw mixed in with the trash. Worse -- far worse -- was the number of bags of primarily recyclable cans and bottles which were thrown right in the same dumpster as the obvious trash.
This is what really pisses me off. I go to considerable trouble to keep recyclables separate, and some lunkhead throws it all in the same pile anyway! I could have strangled someone!
Back when I was an impressionable young child, every pop bottle had to be returned to the store, where little 9-year-old me would receive the kingly sum of three cents for each bottle I returned. Factor in the inflation on the dollar in that time -- about 6X -- and we're talking darn near 20 cents on a bottle today, if we bothered to, which we do not.
This is why I am entirely for mandatory deposits on all beverage containers. This is how I would do it: 20 cents on each can or bottle 12 ounces or less, 25 cents on 31 ounces or less, and 50 cents per on everything larger. Darn tootin', not a single can or bottle would end up in the trash, because an army of 9-year-old kids would be out there rummaging through every trash can, scouring every road side, and playing vulture at every party, making darn sure to redeem every item. Money talks, and governments provide the microphones.