We saw Wall-E today. What an awesome movie!!!! I loved it very much (and may have laughed harder in some parts than anyone in the audience) and I highly recommend it for everyone. Even kids. There were a number of small children there, and even the 2-year-old that stood up grabbing the seat in front of him stayed (mostly) quiet throughout. It's a really good movie that can keep a child that young quiet, even though for the first bunch there's next to no dialogue! So go and see this one :)
I was highly entertained by this movie and at the same time, I felt that the movie really made a strong comment on the conspicuous consumption and disposability in our society. I don't want to give too much away but, as you probably know, in the movie the entire planet is covered in garbage and humans go into space so that the planet can be cleaned up. Think about that for a second: the entire planet is covered in garbage?!?!
Ok, so we're not quite covered in garbage but we do have a lot of it! Toronto is currently trucking garbage to a Michigan landfill - 74 truckloads a day, on average, in the first half of 2007. So, umm, how is this good? It gets the garbage out of Toronto but it increases pollution and it doesn't reduce the total amount of garbage on the planet. Unfortunately, as long as there is garbage, it has to be dealt with. And more unfortunately, it seems that we live in a consumerist age where we can just go out and buy things. Does consumerism lead to more garbage? I wish it didn't, but I think it does. After all, we have to get rid of the packaging of the items we purchase.... and if we're buying just to have new stuff, what happens to the old stuff? At least some of it will be thrown away.
I know that many people are working hard to recycle and compost and to reduce the garbage they produce. I wish that manufacturers were taking as much responsibility for reducing waste in the products they make. As an example, they could use less packaging. Why enclose a plastic bottle in a boxboard box? Why are DVDs that are already in plastic cases additionally completely enclosed in plastic wrap? Why do headphones come in that awful ginormous plastic packaging? All this extra packaging isn't needed, really, and is just garbage. I also wish retailers would help and re-use some of their display packaging. Just the other day, I bought some undergarments and they shoved the items including their plastic hangars into the plastic bags. Why would they do this instead of keeping and re-using the hangars?
I think I could go on like this for quite a long time, so I'll stop here. It's getting close to bedtime and if I keep on ranting like this I won't be able to get to sleep.
Um, I have been known to take the item out of the packaging and ask the cashier to dispose of it. And when I got junk inserts with my bills, I would mail them back to the company in their handly prepaid envelop while I paid the bill online. Now if I could only get other consumers to join me in my garbage revolt :)
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