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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 9/16/18

God Made Bananas, Fish, and Kids. "The Graduate" Made Plastic. So...

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages)   4 comments, In Series: Angry Mother Nature
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Have plastic bags begun to clutter your life enough to spark bouts of orneriness?

Have you said to that grocery-store shopper, who picked up a clump of bananas and put them in a plastic bag, "Excuse me, you know, they come wrapped by nature?"

I have... Again, July 23rd at Safeway.

Ever wonder what prompted such pushiness?

I have.

Was it viewing the continental-sized gyres or "Great Pacific Garbage Patch" of plastic floating our oceans on television? The pictures of fish eating plastic that you buy to eat and feed family and friends?

From Plastic Ocean | See how many pieces of plastic you can find  | Flickr1024 Ã-- 681 - 740k -
From Plastic Ocean | See how many pieces of plastic you can find | Flickr1024 Ã-- 681 - 740k -
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Or was it scuba diving and snorkeling memories of the beautiful ocean depths around Saint John, Virgin Islands?

Or was it something deeper and more gripping?

I keep my cloth shopping bags filled with clean, used-before plastic bags. I have been known to use bread bags for the apples and peaches I buy, be they organic or not. A couple times the checker has implored me not to use bread bags, because the stamped bread bag codes are automatically read into the computer rather than the apples' cost.

I've obeyed and tried to make life easier for the besieged checker.

But I continue to ask myself, "Why aren't those nice suburban mothers, who rip off a new plastic bag to carry home two sweet potatoes, more concerned about the plastics-ingesting fish their kids will be digesting? Does one need a bag for a couple potatoes that you will scrub before cooking or microwaving?

From File:Pacific-garbage-patch-map 2010 noaamdp.
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Will some grocery store be brave enough to hang portrait-sized pictures or a looping video (like the one above) of gyres of plastic trash pimpling our world -- next to the plastic tear-out dispenser? Will it show plastic-starving whales?

Would the pictures make a bigger sustainable difference than a few discussions in classrooms or some series on Nova?

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Dwayne served in the Peace Corps in the slums of Mumbai, India, worked several Habitat Projects, and was on the start-up team of the California Conservation Corps. He has a Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate University, has been a builder, teacher, (more...)

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