We have lamented many times on these pages the deplorable condition of our highways and byways. It’s not that the intersections of our city are all unattractive; however, it doesn’t matter if the intersections are paved with golden bricks, the trash that accumulates mars any vista. Thursday, the Keep Macon-Bibb Beautiful Commission implemented a community cleanup campaign, Macon 365 Cleanup, that’s designed to go on forever. It has to. Executive Director Pam Carswell, Litter Prevention Committee Chairman Ron Foster and Macon-Bibb County Mayor Robert Reichert stressed the importance of having clean, litter-free streets.
While this is in conjunction with the Great American Cleanup, we can take no comfort in the fact that other communities are struggling with litter and other refuse on our same scale or greater. And as the title implies, Macon 365 Cleanup has to be an ongoing effort. The job of keeping our community clean is more than any one, two or three agencies can handle. Civic clubs have adopted intersections, off-ramps and other areas, but it’s not enough.
The problem we have is tied to human nature -- and not the good side of it. Somewhere along the way, we lost the fight against litter. People feel perfectly comfortable dumping their fast food bags and wrappers, cigarette butts and trash bags full of garbage on our streets. We must change the behavior. Carswell called on churches, businesses, residents, neighborhood organizations and Adopt-A-Spot groups to join the effort. While she asked for the above groups to commit to at least one cleanup this year, we suggest one cleanup a month. Why? If your group or organization will join the effort, you will see how quickly an area gets relittered. If enough people experience this phenomenon, the word will get out quicker that nothing about littering is cool.
According to a media release, Keep Macon Bibb Beautiful Commission and Macon-Bibb County are there to support groups, organizations and individuals who decide to take up the cause. KMBBC will supply trash bags, safety vests and gloves. Macon-Bibb County’s Solid Waste Department will arrange for a dumpster to be placed in and picked up from an area. Call KMBBC at 478-330-7054. To schedule a dumpster, contact the Solid Waste Department at 478-803-0499.
As one anti-littering campaign out of Toronto, Canada said, “Littering says a lot about you,” and it says a lot about our city. We can have a clean city, but it’s going to take everyone’s cooperation.