Editorial, Opinion

WEIL: A brand new day

You’ve got to love our national holidays. What other country has a day devoted to a small rodent peeking its head out of a hole? Americans go crazy with holiday spirit. Whether it’s for Halloween or Valentine’s Day, super-specialized products can satisfy even the most voracious of consumers. But there is a lesser-known holiday fast approaching that embraces a less consumerist message: Nov. 14 is America Recycles Day.

This is the 11th year of ARD, as recyclers know it. The holiday was created in 1997 by the nonprofit National Recycling Coalition to encourage Americans to pledge their dedication to recycling. Now, the holiday has adopted the broader goal of spreading environmental awareness.

It would be grand if ARD provided a day of reflection for Americans ‘-‘- a day for everyone to address their eco-guilt and reevaluate the way they live. Holidays already exist in which people engage in such self-reflection, often around the coming of a new year. At the same time, America Recycles Day should not be as somber as the Day of Atonement, when you are (traditionally) hitting yourself over the head for all your wrong doings. Nor should it be as groggy as New Years Day, when you make half-hearted plans to eat more vegetables or never again take 16 shots of Jose Cuervo at a frat party.

Indeed it should be a positive day, where celebrations across the country inspire the individual to use innovative, yet everyday solutions to fight climate change. At the local ARD fairs, you would ride a pony made of recycled tires and bottles on a carousel powered by the used frying oil from the Chinese restaurant. Instead of fried dough, you could buy a locally grown, sun-baked potato with vegan butter, wrapped in recycled aluminum. Even the moon bounce could be filled with recycled air.

If this holiday were adopted by the government in a way that public and private institutions, as well as individuals, would participate, schools and offices across the country could compete to create the best recycled engineering and art projects. Washingtonians could use the mountains of vetoed bills to create a paper mache decoy of the White House for extra protection.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Back in reality, Boston University will join the nation in celebrating America Recycles Day on Friday. This is a chance for everyone to see what is going on in terms of sustainability on our campus, as well as question our practices and come up with your own innovative solutions to climate change on both an individual and university level. What if the Fitness and Recreation Center was powered by the exercisers, with the machines hooked up to generators? What if we grew vegetables on top of the College of Arts and Sciences, not in the Organic Gardening Club’s greenhouse, but on a green roof that would also work to insulate the building and cut costs? What if other schools were only allowed to use only recycled materials and earth-friendly products?

Enough of the crazy. If enough people participate this Friday, we can show this university our commitment to sustainability and progressive solutions to our changing planet. The BU celebration will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday on Marsh Plaza. Or, since it will probably be raining, the GSU link. Plus, I hear there will be free coffee.

Website | More Articles

This is an account occasionally used by the Daily Free Press editors to post archived posts from previous iterations of the site or otherwise for special circumstance publications. See authorship info on the byline at the top of the page.

Comments are closed.