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It May Be An Exercise In Futility, But...

I recycle.
I know there's a gadzillion tons of stuff that isn't.
Yet, I rinse out my little recyclables, put them tenderly into my bin, and haul them out to the curb along with my little collection of newspapers and other paper things are neatly presented to the fellows who, every Monday morning, unceremoniously toss them into a large, undifferentially compartmented truck.
So, I wonder...
and am reminded of the posit "When a butterfly sneezes..."
Do I make any difference in the light of the monstrous amount of things that are polluting our planet?
Is this an exercise in futility?
Am I Sisyphus?

Yes, and yes, I believe this is true.
But at least I can rest assured that in my own conscience, I am doing something.
angsty angsty 61-65, F 6 Responses Aug 4, 2012

Your Response


I too make a point of saving my recyclables when out and about so that I may dispose of them properly. I cringe when I see my mother throwing away soda cans.

This is an additional response to sciguy18. I love that you quoted Helen Keller. I read her biography several times and have seen a movie made about her. What a fascinating human being she was. A wonderful quote to put in response to Angsty's ex<x>pression of recycling. Velvetflow

Angsy, It's me Velvetflow. I'm glad you're doing your part, and yes, each one of us doing something to help our planet is wonderful. It does count. Even though, there's so much pollution now, more than ever; it may seem futile in terms of the big picture.. Yet, it isn't. Every little bit helps and there is some saying that one person can change the world. Perhaps that's a huge project. (joke) and yet, it really is very true. If one person hears what you do and this inspires another person and then another, it becomes a chain reaction. And as it's said, change starts at the bottom and goes up, not the other way.<br />
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I applaud your recycling efforts. I do my part in writing and protesting environmental issues because I care very deeply about Gaia and also because I'm one of the canaries in the coal mine whose been very adversely affected by pollutants. Right now my area of the country is being bombarded with aerial spraying with 9 poison pesticides due to the West Nile Virus. I was part of an environmental group here and years ago went to our city council with educators and toxicologists, etc. about the poisonous affects of aerial spraying. They listened and they learned and they did not do the aerial spraying but did the ground truck spraying. <br />
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This time our current mayor refused to listen to the educated, the scientists and the public outcry here against this atrocity to humans and animals that help the eco-system and find safer and more effective ways to deal with the problem. He went ahead and lied to us about so much.<br />
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So, I'm more home bound and dealing with taped windows and a taped back door to prevent the massive onslaught of pesticides which were sprayed over my area all last night.<br />
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It will continue next week for two days. Some of my environmental friends hit the dirt and went to safer parts. One was to Fort Worth where they refused to do the aerial spraying, one to Austin, TX. After the spraying began, finally, people in the hardest hit with outbreaks of West Nile called their cities to come and clean up their standing water which bred the larvae. And, yes, these were where the most outbreaks occurred. My healthier friends went down to the city Council and spoke up. The mayor listened and appeared to have a changed mind and the very next day went ahead with his agenda in spite of the public not wanting it and even with his own counsel members angry with him for not being consulted.<br />
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I really think the area where I live is the most backwards of places with ecological awareness. Take care and keep recycling. Velvetflow

The outbreak of the west nile virus in Texas has just recently been mentioned in my local (Michigan) news. There's been one case here so far. But the alarm is being rung with all the fear-mongering the media loves to inject us with. Idiots.
What you're experiencing is truly horrible. I would bet there's lawyers behind that major's decision to go ahead with his agenda. He's avoiding a lawsuit brought on by anyone who claims the government "did nothing".
Kafka would weep.

I think Kafka would have said, "I told you so."

Yes, Ava, I too am "The Mad Recycler" at work. I stuff things to be recycled in my tote bag to take home for my bin. <br />
And thank you, sciguy18, for putting what we recyclers do so succintly in Helen's quote.

Recycling is something I do. Even to the extent of bringing things home to recycle, rather than them ending up in landfill. However I am not convinced about plastic, most of it is shipped, literally around the world, for sorting, so that does sometimes end up in the bin.

“I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everthing, but still I can do something; I will not refuse to do something I can do.” ~ Helen Keller