This drizzly Sunday morning, Summer and Rabia (photo) got out into the park with picker-uppers and buckets and helped the groundskeeping staff of the Parks and Waterfront Department keep the park clean. Their unpaid efforts were part of Project 22, a community service agency. Wherever Summer and Rabia had been, there wasn’t a speck of litter to be seen.
Picking up litter is a little bit like fixing broken windows. When there’s broken windows, people get the idea that nobody’s paying attention, and so more windows get broken and other bad things happen. Same with litter. One piece of trash on the ground sends the message that it’s cool to drop trash on the ground. People rationalize that since other people have done it before them, it’s no big deal if they do it too. But there’s not a lot of people so blind and hostile that they are willing to drop the first piece of trash on a spotless scene. Yes, every bit of litter makes a difference, and Summer and Rabia were on the scene making that difference. Happy New Year to them.