As I was idling Monday, March 14, at the stoplight at Florida Park Drive and Palm Coast Parkway, I witnessed a crime.
I saw two silhouettes through the rear window of a pickup truck.
The driver gestured to the passenger.
Then the passenger rolled the window down half way.
And he tossed a fast-food drink cup out the window. Straw, cup, lid, just lying there.
Then off sped the truck, a red-orange Chevrolet pickup with red tape covering the right taillight and a bumper sticker that read “It’s just like your opinion, man.” (I know, the quote doesn’t make much sense without commas around “like.” What can you expect from people who would litter like that?)
I couldn’t believe what I had just witnessed. These were two criminals, and I had done nothing to stop them. I should have jumped out of my car, climbed in the bed of the truck and then — I don’t know, punched out their windows and dragged them to the Sheriff’s Office. Whatever it is Batman does.
But instead, I froze. They drove off. I did pull off and pick up the litter and bring it to my office so I could dispose of it.
I didn’t get their license plate number. If you’re reading this, and you know these criminals, please tell them to turn themselves in.
The city’s website calls littering “a habit.” It says, “Litter drives down property values and is a deterrent to new business and tourism.”
Why do people litter? The website says, “People who litter have no sense of ownership of the community — they don’t care.”
A study by the Institute for Applied Research is cited: “More than 44% of people aged 15-24 were observed littering take-out food and beverage containers.”
If you are not one of these litterers, be vigilant. Carry a club, and don’t be afraid to use it.
If you are one of these litterers, please move to another city. After you serve your jail time.