Oakland Streets ... an environmental mess

Written by Lizabeth Gray on .

I'm trying to figure out why people litter; why they drop a candy wrapper after they've had their sweet treat, why they toss plastic cups as they leave a football game, why they think nothing of throwing a cigarette butt out the car window as they drive along or why it is they leave their almost empty vodka bottle on my front wall. Yes, this is personal, this is my environment that is being contaminated.

Why is it that some people think nothing of making a neighborhood into one big garbage can? Not that it is big a surprise ... I live in Oakland.

Sure, this isn't an environmental crisis on the scale of the BP oil spill or a nuclear disaster, it's one of those needling things that shouldn't be hard to fix but is incredibly hard to nail down.

These are fairly intelligent people who have been accepted into one of our fine universities so what is the problem? I want to assume they have a some sense of being an adult ... or is this part of the application process not accounted for?

"Will you behave as an adult during your time at our university? Will you respect the community you live in along with its residents?"

Seems like we hold student athletes to a higher standard of behavior than the students body who go about Oakland and do want they want without a care in the world.

Now that the universities are back in full swing it might be a good time for some of them to think about where their consumers live. Maybe a sorority or fraternity could "Adopt the Block" or an athletic team could go off the playing field and give back to their community by joining in with a neighborhood clean-up?

It's time for the university leaders to take a long walk through Oakland and see what they are missing from their offices on Fifth and Forbes.

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