The Gay Vegans

Taking Action

I have always thought that if something bothers me, I need to take action to change it.

This thought pattern is up front and center every day while I drive around Los Angeles. Yes, I’m paying attention to the political race, the state-sponsored bigotry in states like Mississippi and North Carolina, racism, the hungry and the homeless and the huge amount of kids living in poverty in the US to name a few.

Yet one thing that I come across constantly and feel like I do have the power to change is the vast amount of litter throughout LA. No matter where I drive, I see it.

Not that big of a deal? Maybe not. Some would say there is nothing I can do, that in a county where there are close to 11 million people, there is going to be litter.

To accept this would mean that I would need to think that most people who live here don’t give a shit. They don’t give a shit about litter that makes an area look terrible and litter that has an affect on the environment and wildlife.

From my favorite beach to hiking trails, entrances to the highway and along the street in whichever part of the city I might be driving in, litter is everywhere.

As I think of this and of everything else there is going on in the world, I think of little victories. What does a little victory around litter look like? Maybe seeing the flowers on the side of the road instead of litter. We are in southern California after all where there is an abundance of natural beauty. Maybe it’s watching the dolphins of of Zuma beach knowing that the bag of litter we cleaned up that morning was not going to make it into the ocean. By the way, the Algalita Foundation here in SoCal estimates that 80% of marine debris comes from human activities on land! Maybe it’s being at the on ramp cleaning up litter just to show others that, like them, there are people who give a shit about where they live.

I see myself making a trip to Home Depot for garbage bags and gloves. Nothing ever changes if we don’t take action.

As I create a plan on what I can do to clean up LA, remember that there is metaphorical litter everywhere. From you state legislature to city hall to those who torture animals and spread hate among humans, there is enough of that type of garbage out there to keep us all busy.

Take action.

Thanks for reading!

About Dan Hanley

Gay and vegan in the burbs (of Los Angeles). I blog about veganism, equality, compassion, activism, politics, spirituality, and our awesome life experiences. The "s" includes my husband, Mike! I want this blog to be a tool to build bridges among communities and to inspire people to get involved and vote.

1 comment

  1. I clean up litter in Reverchon Park daily, in my Dallas, Texas ‘hood’. It’s my gayborhood
    (very much so, in a very good way!) daily constitutional walk and for the most part, after 11 years, the park is clean now. When we first moved here 11 yrs ago from Sedona, Arizona, the poor park felt neglected, litter-strewn, and a bit dicey, safety-wise. Now it has been completely redone, with a children’s park, the original crumbling stone walkways and bridges have all been rebuilt, new trees and bushes have been planted, and you’ll be happy to know, our annual Veggie/Vegan festival has found a home at the park; in its 6th year now. It’s full of activities and is basically a success story for our neighborhood. So yes I agree with you. All the time I was picking up litter all those years, I kept imagining how pretty it could be. And little actions taken with love all matter. So keep up the good work And actually in fact an organization has been formed to plant flowers, clean up Turtle Creek, our little rivulet that flows into the Trinity River, and watch over a chain of parks along the creek. It’s called the Turtle Creek Association. A group of folk who live in the area had the same concerns, banded together, and made some improvements. Who knows? It might have encouraged the city to focus on Reverschon to make some more improvements. Hope this little ditty gives you hope❤️

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