Letter to the editor: TIME FOR A NEW FLAG Ecology…remarks on film Ocean of Plastic

parsippany focus

parsippany focusDear Editor:

Without doubt the most important issue of our time is environmental and human justice. Economics and Homeland Security mean little in the knowledge that our natural resources and our wildlife heritage is being destroyed or buried and swamped in plastic pollution.

Having direct experience in trash/litter abatements for well over forty years in the Delaware water Gap National recreation Area, and several other places of public use I have experienced impacts from consumption products first hand. Seeing the film “ A Plastic Ocean” at the Parsippany Library October 10th revealed the plastic pollution phenomena is even more drastic and alarming than human imagination. Reminded me of my return to Panama after 41 years in 2006. Panama, 1968-69; was pristine and beautiful in its breath and scope; its worse eye sores were perhaps some manufactured wood or beer bottles seen on its beaches or roads from human consumption. It was a shock and depressing experience at times to see these once beautiful places, beaches and streets in small villages, littered with plastics. It was the same in other places of travels in Central America and the Caribbean.

Our own Homeland is no different, as the magnitude of the phenomena has literally encroached the whole of Planet Earth all in a mere 50-year period of unregulated plastics production. It is truly as a title of a book first printed in 1864 concerning how the land and people relations were impacted and degraded by the Industrial Revolution as it transformed itself from steam to coal. The title of the book, “Man and Nature” subtitled “The Earth as Transformed by Human Action” author a man from New England George Perkins Marsh lost father and founder of the conservation movement. When oil then is added to the industrial equations of impacts, we have its derivative plastic. Actually the first plastic was derived from coal tar in 1862, and its forms increased until in 1907 we had the first totally synthetic man made plastic known as “bakelite”.  No substance perhaps ever has such an impact, and allowed its unregulated spread in the free market of world trade; perhaps the greatest example of earth as transformed by human action.

This sin or crime against nature demands not individual but government concern and action a new anti-plastic cleanup economy. It is time for the not dependent upon individual virtues and discipline, but the interest of good government in the interest of all humanity not corporate profits and escape of responsibilities associated with their waste. The moment all too many plastic products are utilized they become waste. Corporate franchises like Dunkin Donut, 7-11, Quick Check, Starbucks, many more are all, complicit in this crime against nature and humanity. Plastics and especially those like Styrofoam are in the metabolisms of fish, other fauna and humans.

The advance of fossil fuels and their related technology are all related to war in their inception, accelerated by the invention of the combustion engine for motor vehicles. The cumulative effects now stand before us. Time for the new economy, time for government action.

Time for tax dollars to be used for the new transformation economy, direct subsidies to allow for the changes required, time for the power of the state at the highest level to create these economic conditions, time for a new flag in our lives, to be added and displayed in all government and public offices at every level; time for the Ecology Flag as a symbol of the crisis of our time. Not the economy, but the new economy.  In 1941 the United States in matters of months mobilized its economy to fight against the Axis threat; so this transformation is not new and has been proven to be possible. We must question why this world crisis is being ignored. How is America, Great, How is it exceptional and thriving more than ever before? Only in plastics do we believe without our consent and in the bliss of ignorance and sin.

Ecology Flag let it become a symbol and a new awareness let it stand and fly with the stars and stripes. End the scourge of plastics and the fossil fuel economy that has taken us to damnation and apathy. Convenience is not freedom its pollution, as the end result has proven. RESOLUTION TO BAN PLASTIC LET US GET IT ON!

Nik Homyak
Lake Hiawatha, NJ 07034