So... sometimes it comes up that I am a Green Warrior. (And yes, it is a war. This story proves it. Uphill BATTLE!) When that comes up, I tend to get regaled with stories of wrongs done against the environment. Allow me to share the lastest one with you, because if I don't get it out of my brain... well, let's not find out.
My hair stylist shared with me how good her 5-year-old daughter is at conserving water. Great! Then she told me how bad her brother was. That's where the story gets hair-raising. I shuddered to learn he has kids of his own to pass the badness down.
You know those vending machines that will fill a gallon of water for a quarter? LOVE those things. Reverse osmosis, great clean water, it's wonderful to be able to go to those to fill your containers. I've done it when I didn't have a faucet-mounted filter. Take your empties down and fill a bunch for the week. Great. It never occurred to me that THIS could happen: The brother in question actually said (paraphrasing of course), why go to the gas station and pay $1 or more for a bottle of water, when you can just take an empty single-use bottle and fill it at one of those machines for 25 cents?
...... *blink, blink* ...........
Uh, because of the enormous WASTE of water??? In a state that has a water crisis?? It's gonna dispense a gallon, no matter what. It's what it does. So you fill your little bottle and let the rest run out onto nothing??? This would never ever enter my mind, and I was shocked that anyone would even think to do that. (I hope he's the exception, not the rule, but I don't have that much faith in humanity.) What can we do when faced with such disregard, such willful ignorance, such nonchalance toward the the issues of the environment? How do we fight it? I do not have the answer. I guess all we can do is keep teaching by example, and perhaps when we see wrongs being committed, do our best to educate. Gently. Patiently. I know it's hard. Trust me, I know. But what else can we do?