Letter: All this is really a side show, wake up and smell the plastic

This letter sent to the Star was written by John Scattergood, Totley

By Reader Letter
Tuesday, 18 June, 2019, 13:24
recycleable plastic

Just been looking at programme about plastic waste on I player. However shocking the use of plastic is, the producers seem content to blame any one else for the pollution as a result of their product being consumed. The makers of plastic filled wet wipes for instance seem to blame the consumers and the council's for buying them in the first place and then disposing of them inappropriately.

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I see a parallel, our government seem happy to blame almost anybody else for the political mess we are in, except the real villain David Cameron who in an arrogant and foolhardy way paved the way forward to the nonsense we now find ourselves in. By arrogantly setting a binary question in or out when he must have known that a compromise was inevitable he condemns this country to endless suffering. We are now faced with a Tory leadership contest, I was going to say election but that implies that there is at least some form of democratic process going on.Whilst big business gets on with making stuff we use because it's easy and there appears to be no come back, indeed they can blame the government for not insisting that they take responsibility for its manufacture, legislating against stuff we don't need, then why be surprised when we don't really believe or trust our legislature. To really regain the trust and support of the people our government must re commit to addressing the concerns of us all. Dare one suggest it is time to put Brexit, the NHS, HS2, all on one side and start fighting for the planet rather than vanity projects. Some things are more important than party politics.I think the majority of the people in the country feel this.Setting targets which seem reasonable is ultimately a futile exercise. I hope the vast majority realise this. Doing something as an individual is not a pointless exercise, it is a worthwhile stance. Stop buying stuff which pollutes, now, today, one consumer might not have an impact, but look at what chaos a little over half the voting population had two years ago. Do you think the multinationals can afford to continue telling you what to buy, when you are refusing to buy it. They have to react. If we refuse to buy a polluting product they can soon come up with an alternative. Be a thoughtful consumer, buy wisely, it may cost a little more initially, but that may help you question, do I really need this, does it contribute to my happiness, or detract from it. Am I happy or guilty about buying this thing? Profit making companies prey on our guilt all the time, it is our free choice to buy or not, exercise it.Sadly I see little of this long term and conscience based thinking in the leadership race. I worry that by default we will end up with a leader incapable of delivering what they probably believe they can, paving the way for yet more uncertainty. The consequences for democracy are monstrous. Beware what you wish for Labour because a general election could easily lead to a Brexit led coalition. Much as I tremble at the idea of Boris, or after a general election, Jeremy in no.10, the idea of Nigel is worse. Such is the knife edge we are now on. Yet all this is really a side show, wake up and smell the plastic, (insert favourite apocalyptic phenomenon here).