By Carolina Carneiro, Summer Times Staff Writer
I was sitting down at the Grill one night, when I witnessed the daily struggles of a Grill employee: picking up trash. Scattered on the tables and floor were empty pizza boxes & bottles, dirty, crumpled napkins, and candy bar wrappers. One of the employees threw all of this trash away with anger and judgement towards those who left it there (I could tell this by his stern, hostile facial expression). I do not blame this employee for his reaction, he had to pick up Exonians’ trash when these perpetrators could have easily done it.
What drives me crazy is students’ laziness. Everyone has the ability to stand up, gather his or her trash, and throw it away in a bin, which is deliberately close to the exit so people can throw away their trash when they leave. Yet, students fail to do these simple deeds, despite having arms, legs, as well as an intelligent brain that brings them to the Grill itself.
Our capacities are not limited; we can easily pick up trash, but we choose not to. Some people are accustomed to others picking up after themselves in their homes, or they are used to leaving trash in their rooms and picking them up later (well, no one’s looking right?). Nonetheless, in a public setting like the Grill, if you see a trash bin, what do you think it is there for? For decoration? It is there so you can put your trash in there, regardless of what this bin means to you back at home. It is safe to assume you can leave your trash at your table when there is NO trash bin in sight. However, when you can see one, then you are responsible for picking up after yourself.
This rule also applies to the outside environment. Every time I walk to my dorm, I see bottles and caps on the beautiful, trimmed grass. It is absurd that given the current state of our world — extreme weather, pollution, plastic in ocean — people are still littering. There are trash bins around the campus; there will always be one near you. Therefore, I advise you — I actually demand you — throw away your trash in the bin or just put it in your bag and throw it away later. The difference between the Grill and the outside is that there are people who are going to (or be forced to) pick up the trash, compared to the outside, where the wind will probably pick it up and leave it God knows where; a bird will eat it; someone could step on it and get hurt; or it might be picked up by someone. WE DO NOT KNOW, and for the sake of our health and the future generation’s health, Do NOT Litter. It seems as though people have forgotten one of the most important rules from kindergarten (or preschool): clean up your mess. Remember the clean up song? Does the Grill have to play this song every time breakfast, snack time, lunch, or dinner ends? Personally, I would not mind, it is indeed a bop that is underrated. Yet, as a whole, I know this will be embarrassing for people who are as old as 17, to be reminded through a child’s song, to clean up.