As one who volunteered to clean the filth left by others one recent weekend, permit me to make some observations and some practical suggestions.
It was a bad day for cigarette smokers, beer drinkers and those who urinate in plastic bottles and toss them off the side of the road. The major fast-food chains look bad as do those who toss soiled diapers from their cars. You are pigs in human form. Actually, you are worse than pigs, but it is an apt metaphor.
But the rest of us are to blame for allowing those hogs to ruin our area with their filth. We drive by, or hire people to clean, or walk right past it. One of my co-workers saw me carrying all my collection materials and joked that I was the garbage man. Better a garbage man than a slob, I replied.
There isn't any dignity in littering and there isn't any dignity is resigning to live in its midst. So here are some suggestions for the future.
Enforce littering laws.
Make people who litter spend time picking it up.
Instead of throwing the litter away, return it to its owners. Look for the name on the bag and return it to the store.
If cigarette butts aren't litter, then swallow the things. For as much as they cost, it makes sense.
Refuse to live in a culture of filth. It is contagious to other aspects of life.
Finally, show as much respect for your living conditions and take as much pride in yourselves as you do for a bunch of grown men who wear tight yellow pants with numbers on their shirts.