February 27, 2013

Clean campus, happy campus

By Noah Allison–

One particularly warm but windy night this past week I took a walk to the SAC. While making my way towards the ramp two older students preceded me, not bothering to step around the sacred Cardinal bird in their efforts up the ramp. This was their first notch against them in my book.

Noticing their almost identical outfits of plaid shirts, short shorts and Sperry’s, I inadvertently followed these men up the ramp a few feet further when they managed to lose even more of my respect. The one on the right took the last swig from his water bottle and tossed it on the green grass to the side of the ramp. Clearly these students have neither love nor respect for the campus they call home.

It happened so fast yet I processed it like a horrible accident that kept running over and over in my mind. Without cause or care he just left his non-biodegradable piece of plastic in the grass, not considering how long it may be there or the fact that somebody else would have to clean up after his intentional littering.

I’m not sitting here attacking this guy saying his one bottle will be what poisons our children and destroys their world, I’m simply saying it’s his mindset that I fear so many people in this world have that will leave lasting implications. There was a trash can at the top of the ramp, there are a set of trashcans at the bottom of the ramp, there are trashcans and recycling bins in and around the SAC that he ultimately ended up inside of, and yet the only logical thing he could think to do when finishing his drink was throw the bottle on the ground.

It is that sort of laziness and lack of care that plagues this world. It is a simple matter of holding on to it and waiting to toss it in its intended resting place, not the grass. The campus is literally littered with pieces of paper, plastic bottles, and cigarette butts; our campus would be healthier and better as a whole if its students were more conscious of their actions and how they affect the campus.

My reasoning for writing this is more therapeutic than anything, for I am overcome with guilt from my lack of action. I should have said something, should have made him just pick it up and carry it a few hundred feet further. Or I could have simply hopped over the side railing and picked the bottle up myself, but I didn’t. I stood by and did nothing, as that bottle lay on its cold, green, resting ground. I, like so many other people on this planet, did nothing, and that above all else is what needs to stop.

It’s just too easy to do something about trash on the ground for it to continue to be the makeup of our campus exterior. It’s too easy to hold onto that bottle and throw it away to just toss it on the ground, it’s too easy to go and pick up that jerk’s bottle than to leave it sitting on the ground, and it’s too easy to just make the adult decision of what is best for the environment and best for our campus to continue to ignore it. C’mon man! We’re in college…

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