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South of Downtown cleanup

Kat Wiese (from left) of the South of Downtown Community Development Organization works with volunteers Gabriel Rojas Martinez and Jonathan Contreras Martinez during a recent litter cleanup.

A walk through Carleton on any day gives one a picture of what society seems to have become.

A variety of aluminum drink cans and plastic bottles litter the streets and adjoining property almost everywhere. Even broken beer bottles are seen. It boggles the mind how careless and disrespectful people have become. The residents don’t appreciate this carelessness, and it should not be their responsibility to clean up after those who throw their trash out along the streets of our village.

This goes for the county roads and highways not just in Thayer County but anywhere. In Carleton, just as many other communities, there are trash receptacles. Or, heck -- why not just take it home and throw it away?

Littering is a crime punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and up to six months in jail. This, of course, is very hard to enforce. Laws like that, and speed limits and wearing a seat belt always are.

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But those laws are more as a reminder of responsible and neighborly conduct. We are expected to act respectfully and responsibly.

Sometimes, it seems by even the conduct of our leaders that society expects to “get away with” violations of basic behavioral expectations and even clear laws and when caught to attack the law, the witness, even the authority holding holding us accountable. Time to grow up and be responsible.

Bill McPherson, Carleton

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