When did the street become a universal garbage can? When did drivers decide it was OK to throw their disgusting trash out the window into the street?
If it had just happened once of late, I would blow it off. But when it occurs multiple times in the same week, I just want to pull a citizen's arrest and throw these litterers in the slammer!
Alright, now I might be overreacting just a little bit, which I am certainly known to do, but what is going on? The biggest offenders are definitely smokers. Many smokers must believe that the street and sidewalk is their public garbage can. I have seen many individuals, both men and women, toss their cigarette butts right out the window. There are others, working in my neighborhood, that stand outside the house and still throw their butts in the street. Yuck!
The ones that really get me are the people who throw their garbage out the window of their car. Literally, garbage. A soda or coffee cup, a straw or candy wrapper, a kleenex even! At a stoplight, open the window, and throw the garbage out the window. When did we decide as a society that this was acceptable?
I hated living in the city for a number of reasons, but one of the main reasons was I couldn’t stand how dirty the streets and sidewalks were. For the most part, Deerfield keeps its streets and sidewalks clean, which make our houses and neighborhoods look well-kept. But, if this keeps up, and the traffic and construction continue, we may as well be living in the city.
In reviewing the laws of the State of Illinois, penalties are pretty severe if caught littering on public highways. Penalties include but are not limited to a fine as well as “litter control” on a designated area of highway for 30 days.
Locally, I’m not sure littering takes on the same level of punishment here in Deerfield, but I wish it would. It is easy enough to throw a plastic bag in your car, toss your trash in there and throw in in a proper receptacle at a gas station, a place of work, or even the garbage can at your home.
As a society are we getting lazier or have we just stopped caring? What can we do to make these litterers stop? Maybe a “litter control” unit working Deerfield Road would be good incentive.
Editor's note: The views expressed in this opinion column are those of the author, Elizabeth Fish, and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch or Deerfield Patch. Thank you for reading!