Texas used to have an anti-littering slogan entitled, "Don't mess with Texas?" Well, you can take that statement in more ways than one. Texas is known for taking the death penalty very seriously. It is one of the rare states in the union where criminals are just in "awe" of that statement. Of course in this case, Texas was referring to motorists littering "mess" instead of disobeying social norms. As with budget restraints, it appears that state and local governments have all but abandoned anti-littering campaigns. Failing to keep the hammer down on litterers, they have completely gone wild in Ogden. One Ogden couple who walks two laps around the Dee Events Center every morning is just beside themselves with how people litter their beloved Weber State University campus.
Like the rest of the city of Ogden, WSU is not immune to having student litterers perpetrate upon its beautiful campus, and especially victimizing the campus extremely beautiful and manicured lawns. Areas of interests in the litter "watch" is Harrison Blvd between 36th and 46th streets, Monroe Blvd between 23rd and 25th Streets, and a host of cigarette butts tossed on the sidewalks on Washington Blvd between 25th and 32nd Streets. Budget restraints need not be the issue here when especially there is a host of potential volunteers to keep the city clean. School will be out for the summer, and those students compose of a host of potential volunteers to keep the city absolutely spotless during the summer months. Ogden has a host of homeless people who just waist tons of time just sitting on the lawns of City Hall Headquarters near 25th and Washington.
The Men of Weber has an idea that would benefit not only our club, but our beautiful city, county, and our hardworking and victimized Ogden merchants. The club has just finished it awareness campaigns for sexual assault and child abuse perpetrators in April, and now it is time to turn our attention to littering perpetrators while at the same time assisting the homeless in May and June. To accomplish these ideals, we need the help of the City of Ogden, its merchants and aggressively-interested citizens to keep litterers at bay. The club would like to sponsor 55-60 garbage cans throughout the city. The cans will have our branding as well as a merchant who sponsored that particular can. These cans will be noticeable and bring great innovations in implementing a true anti-litter campaign. As you are well aware, raccoons are known for overturning garbage cans in backyards. These cans will have a picture of a ravenous raccoon attacking garbage. The caption would read: "A critter litters because it is looking for food. What's your excuse?" ONLY A CRITTER SHOULD LITTER!
Some people have to be reminded that they are human beings and that their conduct should greatly exceed the conduct of little furry critters. Implementing a campaign like ONLY A CRITTER SHOULD LITTER should be a great reminder for people to dispose of their trash like the intelligent beings that their Creator made them to be. Motorists usually are oblivious to the littering that surrounds them. However pedestrians see the inner core of the problem as they are walking to and from bus stops, to and from campus, and to and from shopping. I have an idea that I will present to the City Council during the next Council meeting on how the city, aggressively-interested citizens and merchants, and how we can reactivate our homeless population to have a greater share in keeping Ogden City clean and litter-free during the summer months and for years to come. The Men of Weber has committed to helping a couple, near the Univeristy, to clean up their neighborhood on "Make a Difference Day" on May 5, 2010. We also invite aggressively-interested citizens to help us with our Adopt-A-Highway program for UDOT to keep portions of 21st heading toward the interstate from Wall Avenue free of debris.
Remember being passively-active does not get the desired results of making changes for our community. However, having aggressively-interested citizens in Ogden will bring about change in littering behavior.
Johnson resides in Ogden. You may reach him at (801)626-8617. Join the Men of Weber for Make a Difference Day in Ogden.