Every day, I would get down from the bus, pull the ticket tucked safely beneath my ring and put it inside my bag. I would eat chocolates, and deposit the wrappers inside my bag or purse. I’ll reach home and empty my bag of all the waste and put them in the dustbin. I have been following this practice for quite some time now. Must have picked it up during the college. Sometimes, I would tell my friends not to litter the environment and they would scoff at me. They would ensure that I see them throwing it or they would take my bag and stuff the wrappers in it. Why shouldn’t we litter the environment? is a question they never ask.
In a day, I see so many strangers throwing papers and plastics on the street. I cannot approach each one of them and ask them not to do it. I can. But, I don’t think they’d take it well. However, I could tell my friends. Or so I thought. But every time I try, they gang up and the joke is on me. Though I could argue, I don’t think they are willing to listen. Because they know the banes of polluting. They just find it easier to cover up their act and have some fun at my cost and continue with their lifestyle.
Why shouldn’t we litter the environment? They never asked. For not asking made their lives easier.
Yesterday, this happened again. One of my friends threw a paper in the street. A few steps more and we would have reached our building which had enough dustbins. I told him so. He began defending himself and sought the help of another friend. The two of them had lots of fun mocking me. Later on, they pointed at something in the room where the food waste was kept and asked me to clean it all up. Since I was preaching stuff, it was mandatory that I practiced it, they said.
Why don’t you pick up all the waste around if they bother you so much? They implied. Yet, they didn’t ask me why not to litter the environment? I could have given them a purpose.
I don’t mind cleaning things up. I have gone to extents some people wouldn’t think of, to clean up places & things, and I would do it all over again if the need arises. What they missed during the entire conversation was that, I wasn’t asking them to clean up after someone else, I was only asking them to refrain from littering.
My message was lost while the only thing they remember & focused on, was that I pointed out a fault. When I said, ‘Put it in a dustbin’, they heard ‘You are at fault’. The jibes after that were simply to get back at me. To belittle me so that they felt better. When there is a chance to mock someone, people join hands & have fun.
As for my side of it, there is only one reason I am doing this.
Do you think I am doing this to save the Earth? No! As a friend once told me, the Earth needs no saving. We humans need saving. Our body and our mind needs saving. If we save the surroundings, we save our health. What do you think will happen to Earth because of our actions? When she can bear no longer, she would just shrug off all the filth from her body, wash out all the dirt and life would perish. The Earth remains. Now ask yourself; why shouldn’t we litter the environment?
If I could get this message across to my friends with due seriousness, maybe there could be some change. I realized that my attempts at educating them personally failed every time. All I can do now, is to unload it right here on my blog, to be forgotten, until something else comes up, right? Currently, I don’t see any other way to get the message across.
Every time I write about Littering the Environment, I hope at least one person will be inspired by it. Every time I ask someone not to litter, I hope at least one person would understand. Instead, every single time, I am verbally bashed and belittled and every time a little part of my belief dies. And as I introspect, I wonder. Am I wrong? Are their reasons justifiable? When everyone around me mock at my purpose, does it make them right & me wrong? Sometimes I lose faith in myself and in my beliefs. Should I stop? Am I fighting for a lost cause? Am I hopelessly, desperately alone in this?
It really isn’t easy to spread messages like these when people are ready to pounce at you. There are always these two sides of me battling each other. One, my inner voice. The other, the voices of the people around me. The former voice wins every time. This time though, I let the latter win. Initially. Not anymore. It isn’t time to stop trying. I will continue my work and I will make a difference. If not today, some day soon. And you will know why you shouldn’t litter our planet.
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