Sherry Horowitz: Policing Plastic Pollution

November 27, 2018
Letter to the Editor of the Gazettesherry2017

To The Editor:

For those of you who may have missed it, State Assemblywoman Sandra Galef’s recent annual Newsletter Questionnaire, relating to “plastic Pollution”, was summarized in last week’s edition of the Gazette.
The article reported that “An overwhelming majority of respondents indicated they believe single-use plastic bags are harming the environment (89%). 68% of people responding said they would support implementing a nominal fee on carry-out plastic bags, 59% said they would support a ban on plastic bags, with a minimum charge of 10 cents on paper carry-out bags, and 73% said they would support a ban on plastic bags with no fee on paper bags.
I was very gratified to read the results of Assemblywoman Galef’s questionnaire, and to see the strong support for legislation on this issue. I have heard folks say that reducing or eliminating single use plastic bags is such a small response to the larger climate change issue, the proverbial “drop in the bucket”. Here’s a little parable to put that in perspective:
A sparrow heard that the sky was falling, and lay down on his back. Along came one of the king’s horsemen. He said, “What are you doing?” The sparrow said, “I heard the sky is falling, and I’m holding it up.” The horseman was amused: “Do you really think you can hold up the sky with those little legs?” And the sparrow said, “We do what we can.”
And so we do what we can. And when many people do it, it becomes magnified; whole communities do it, and states, and even countries. We do it not for our own self-satisfaction, but to be good and careful stewards of the environment. We do it for the benefit of the planet that we share.
Sincerely, Sherry Horowitz, Trustee, Village of Croton-on-Hudson

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