6 thoughts on “Photo”

  1. Back in the 1960′ I remember snowdrifts of trash along every highway, in every gutter.

    I suppode the US government’s ad campaign with the crying Amerind was a huge success, huh?


  2. No, roads are as trashed as ever, it’s just that we have these adopt-a-road programs and misdemeanor-convicted community service workers that keep us all from seeing the true volume of the pollution.

    I have to make an admission. As a teenager, I would often drive home with a nightcap beer or two in my car. I would drive past my parents house and onto one of our rural canopy roads to finish them off and always, never thinking to stop at a garbage can, would throw the evidence out the window into the country-side. Granted, 50,000 years from now that glass will be part of the soil and I avoided polluting businesses or the yards of neighbors…but I still feel guilty.

    Today, I’m angry as hell about the pollution I see…but I also get that pang of guilt when I see it. I think our youth contribute the most to the trash we side on the side of the road. I’m not sure how you can teach them not to do it.

    It takes time to realize the value of aesthetics and or the cumulative effect of roadside pollution. Perhaps mandatory curb-side community service after a three month lapse of attention could drive the point home.

  3. Oh I don’t know. In some places it’s hard to find a good piece of trash even if you want to. The area in the photo is clean enough that a bottle stands out. I’d hate to have to start buying expensive beer just so that I could use the containers as props for my artiste-wannabe efforts.

    The point about road-cleanup programs is interesting. Perhaps such programs encourage littering by lowering its apparent cost. OTOH, perhaps the net cost (either in more trash on the road or in spending public money enforcing anti-littering laws) of not having such programs would exceed the cost of these programs. It’s an empirical question.

    I remember those crying-Indian ads. What a crock. The plains Indians, far from being environmentally aware in the modern sense, used to run herds of buffalo over cliffs. But I suppose the ad satisfied some people’s need to feel smug and other people’s need to feel guilty. And that was a long time ago. Nowadays, at least here in the U.S., the air, water, forests, etc. are cleaner than ever and people cross the street if someone lights a cigarette. I’m not worried about the state of the environment and I wasn’t even thinking about such things when I made the picture.

  4. “I remember those crying-Indian ads. What a crock.”

    Oh, I agree. I made just that point a few days ago at The Handbasket when I wrote a post about the Great North American Megafauna Extinction.

    “I’m not worried about the state of the environment and I wasn’t even thinking about such things when I made the picture.”

    I’m not worried about it either. The pic just triggered a memory cascade.

    Hey, isn’t that what art is supposed to do?


  5. Is it just me, or did anyone find those crying indian ads condescending to indians? I’m part Cherokee, but that’s not why I found the ads distasteful…just seemed like a stupid commercial. But then again, I was only like 9 years old when that campaign came out.

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