Getting rid of the Garbage

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that one of the great joys of coming back home after visiting another country is taking a look through the photos and videos one has taken, and marveling again at the places one has been to. I usually do this bit by bit as I slowly upload my photos on social media, while savoring each memory of those times for as long as I can (or at least, before the next trip abroad comes along!)

During the last 5 years I have been to Sicily 4 or 5 times, and this Mediterranean island, which is the closest one to the Maltese archipelago, never ceases to amaze me. I admit, part of the fascination is the fact that it is so much like my own Malta… and yet, so different too. In fact I previously wrote an article about it, which mainly focused on the historical ties between the two islands, and which one can read here. However with the positive, unfortunately, one also has to face the negative aspects of each country, and while Malta and Sicily have a lot of amazing things in common, such as their heritage, architecture, art, food, etc, they also have one other thing in common which they could well do without.

I am talking about garbage.

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Every country, indeed every place where there is human habitation, generates an amount of garbage. That is normal. The responsible and acceptable thing to do of course, is to take care of this waste and recycle it, or at least dispose of it in some constructive way which does not damage the environment or ourselves.

Unfortunately, that much appreciated lassaize-faire attitude which both the Maltese and the Sicilians have in common, is, I think, the issue from which the waste-related problem stems. The so-called ‘u ijwa‘ (an expression basically meaning ‘I don’t give a damn’) attitude is why people simply don’t care enough to pick up their trash and take it with them whenever they are in the countryside for a picnic for example, or at the beach for a swim. What’s worse, larger junk and discarded appliances, such as BBQs, mattresses, fridges, etc, which in Malta is even picked up free of charge by local councils once or twice a week from the front of one’s own household, is, for some incomprehensible reason, left outside to rust and deteriorate, besmirching our natural habitat, instead.

And this is what I found in Sicily, and as I was looking at which photos to upload in my online album, the issue became even more evident. There were photos in my camera which I discarded, simply because the trash overwhelmed the beauty and nature around it. Why are humans so destructive? No other mammal or indeed, no other animal, is such a parasite on nature as humanity. And that is surely nothing to be proud of. 

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The worse is that these photos are just a pale reflection of what I saw – and here I mean both the beauty of Sicily, and the corrosive trash left lying around it. The only thing I can do, is hope that this ‘u ijwa‘ attitude is slowly eroded out of the population, either through education, or through the consequences of learning that living in one’s own filth, is of detriment both to the mind and the body, and is one of the unhealthiest things one can do. Sounds like common sense doesn’t it? So, how come we have this issue?

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Against the Law and still nothing is done!! The Bullshit of certain Facebook groups!!

A couple of weeks ago, someone I know entered me as a member into a group she and some of her friends had opened on Facebook, to support a cause I knew nothing about, without my consent or knowledge. She just up and added me (and my bf too), without saying anything. Later on when I asked her about it, she said she had added me because she wanted me to write an article about this cause – basically in order to ask people for money.

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Even had I been all in favor of this cause (which I am not, seeing as to how I am against layabouts acting rashly and irresponsibly, and then asking for donations from the public, and sanctions from the government, just to pursue their personal agendas), I simply hate being forced into a Facebook group without my knowledge and having to endure the barrage of posters, comments and random statuses on my newsfeed, not to mention the millions of emails linked to that. And secondly, seriously, did she really think I would write an article about this asking people for their hard earned money??

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I gave the ‘Group’ in question a piece of my mind, regarding the issue they were asking money for in particular. They obviously did not like this, but I did not remain to see their reaction, since I immediately deleted my membership. It is important to note, that though I gave them my reasons why I thought this issue was totally inappropriate, I did so politely and wished them well before withdrawing my membership. I also contacted the person who had included me in the membership list privately,and told her why I did not think their cause was just, and was not interested in participating, much less write an article linking me to it!!!

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Apparently she resented the fact that I did not share her opinion, and she unfriended me. lol. Well dear, you shouldn’t have brought the whole thing to my attention if you did not want my honest opinion about it right? Anyways this was the second time in two weeks that this person had forcefully integrated me in one of her many Facebook groups without my knowledge, and frankly if she had not unfriended me, I would have, so thanks for sparing me the effort of clicking my mouse. Another thing, not everyone is a stay-at-home unemployed Facebook addict, so good for you if you have time for all this Facebook lobbying – I don’t, nor do I wish to. When I have some free time, I write or read 🙂

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TO MAKE MATTERS WORSE

Said Facebook group, a week later, created a petition on change.org. I would have thought nothing of it EXCEPT that they listed all the members of the group… AND MY NAME WAS THERE?!

Seriously? So, not only had I written a long statement about why I didn’t want to be a member and quit, now you also put my name on your petition for people to send you money?! Are you out of your bloody mind? Do you know what DATA PROTECTION is?? Do you know that putting up someone’s name and/or personal details online without their consent (or even knowledge) is AGAINST THE LAW?!

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I contacted change.org and told them the information on the petition was incorrect and they told me I had to contact the person who had made the petition in the first place, in order for them to delete my name. I found the creator and contacted her on facebook, but she never replied. After a week of me sending her messages, she still had not replied, although I know she was on facebook as I saw her posting photos! I contacted change.org again and told them I had gotten nowhere, and am still currently waiting for a reply.

This ‘petition’ boasts that there are 108 active group members, of which I, seemingly, am one. Since my name was put there without my knowledge, I must wonder, how many of these so-called members actually know about it?

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What else can I do to get my name out of there??

Oh and by the way – in the end I DID WRITE AN ARTICLE… AGAINST your stupid cause! I did not mention anyone by name or the cause in particular, but I DO HOPE YOU READ IT AND APPRECIATE MY CONTRIBUTION!

http://www.eve.com.mt/2015/02/01/passionate-about-animals-love-or-just-selfishness-in-disguise/

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