The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

It's against the law to shoot a litterbug!!!

by db Conard, The Quill

It was just the way I grew up in the military community :there was no litter!

And if there was, it wouldn't be there long.

Just in case there was litter in the neighborhood, hundreds of soldiers were deployed on police call to sweep the area. They cleaned up everything down to cigarette butt size and smaller trash.

If it didn't grow, or have some purpose for being there, it was trash and it was removed.

It always left a pristine area which reflected on the United States and the military community. It was how they were taught to care for things.

I realize, it's a whole different story on a military base then it is on a country road or a rural town,

It was years later, while I was writing a column for a newspaper in the south, that I had been so impressed with the fact that you could hardly find any litter along the roads in the heartland that I wrote a story about the that region and the pride the people took in their countryside and roadways. It was so clean that it reminded me of many European communities that I had traveled and lived in throughout my life where residents would even wash and sweep the streets to show their pride.

Yesterday on the lake, I realized that one of the lowest forms of pests that I can think of, even beneath ticks and mosquitoes, are the despicable low life creatures known as litterbugs.

Sadly, they had found their way to some of the most remote Edens that nature has to offer. I had pulled my kayak over a number of obstacles and was I deep into a small creek that runs off the lake and experiencing some of the most seldom seen land by man that you might find anywhere, when I looked down to find beneath five feet of the most crystal clear water, a beer can.

I was surprised at how strongly I felt over this insult to nature and to society.

It would have been an easy thing to dispose of properly.

How things have changed even along our local highways and country roads.

When ticks and mosquitoes were created, you have to think that there must be some higher purpose for their existence.

But, a litterbug, I can't envision any good purpose in their being, for they only disturb what otherwise might be beautiful.

Most people don't know what a litterbug looks like but they all know what they make each of us feel like - and it's very angry.

How often do we get the chance to catch one, and then do anything about it if you did.

I laugh when I see the $20 to $500 fine sign for littering and I have to wonder how effective the signs have been in keeping these little pests away. Have the signs ever generated enough to pay for themselves?

Furniture, appliances, tires, any kind of trash is fair game for a litterbug to contaminate the worlds of all their neighbors.

Could it be that a litterbug is just thoughtless and didn't realize what they were making of themselves through their stupid acts of defacing our country?

Is there hope for these drooling fools to be caught who for years, have trashed everyone's view just because they thought they could get away with it?

What most litterbugs fail to realize is that each time they leave that little trail of slime behind them, they diminish themselves and their world, too.

They should be more aware of themselves, because, the word gets out, and then the label sticks - LITTERBUG!

Hopefully, being good at being sneaky will catch up with them eventually, and they will trip over their own garbage right into their neighbor's awareness.

But, you and I know, it's against the law to shoot a Litterbug. Maybe we could just step on it.