How do you educate a nation that litters?
This is a culture that is not taught about environmental awareness from a young age. They watch(ed) their parents litter, so they litter. And subsequently, the next generation litters, and so on. How to really stop it? We can say we can run educational programming to teach the masses, however if the culture doesn’t care, how do you get them to care? They seem to enjoy going out into the beautiful nature and enjoying it, while still leaving their plastic behind. I don’t get it? I know that a class system plays into this attitude as well. For instance, it is believed that the higher classes shouldn’t pick up garbage. That it is in fact for the lower classes to do. That is a deeply entrenched idea. How to shift it in a deep and meaningful way that will actually work?
I totally agree that littering is an important issue too. I believe encouraging individuals to spend more time in the natural world will intimately shift our culture to respect the enviroment (and not litter). I don’t know that this issue of littering has much to do with education received at young age (because I do remember being taught about garbage and water usage, although it wasn’t nearly as substantial or impactful as I would’ve liked, yes).
Providing more education for these asleep, or ignorant, people who feel that littering is acceptable might also reinforce for a lasting shift in culture. But I think that direct experience will be fundamental to the changing of our culture.
Right now, I am working to produce a short 2-minute video actually telling people about an increase in trash recepticals for the community to throw out their trash as opposed to littering. Not sure how well the video will be perceived (or if it will be effective) but the protagonist of the clip will be a ‘trash man’ character who is “likable” and “credible”
Nice idea with the video. I think it’s a good approach. So many people are very visual and video is engaging in today’s ‘instant’ culture. Using attractive themes like comedy and ‘the profound’ would also be great methods for video education to the masses. These days a video can go viral within just a couple of days if it’s done well. All the best!
“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”
~ Native American Proverb