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Waste Not Get Not Essay

872 words - 3 pages

Archer 1
Aaron Archer
English 100 MW 1- 3:20
Essay #5
"Waste Not, Get Not"
In "Waste not, Want not" Bill McKibben argues against our excessive hyper
consumerism and suggests a "return to the frugality of simpler times." He offers that we can
either hang onto the status quo of Costco size living or instead go to a retro post-waste living
style. While McKibben may be correct that our American materialistic thinking can be the
cause of unnecessary simple waste such as disposable products and outdated technology, he is
too overzealous in his thinking. There is a fine line between simply wasting materials and food
for no reason, and putting them to good use to either enhance or maintain our style of modern
living. McKibben wrongly defines his idea of "waste", in which he included people wasting
their life for a cause that isn't his, and technological achievements in our quickly advancing
world. McKibben is wrong, these do not define as waste, but instead freedom to do as you
please and progress for our species. Hyper consumerism is not a terrible thing if it is pushing
developers to produce superior and more efficient technology.
Countless items are discarded everyday, most people do not really stop and think to see
if they can recycle an item, or donate it to an organization that can give it to someone who will
appreciate it. This is the simple waste that I agree with McKibben should be processed, spared
for later usage, and re-consumed, if not used at all. McKibben describes a man named Chris

Archer 2
Jordan who is the "photographer laureate of waste," Jordan recently executed a project that
projected astonishing numbers of simple everyday waste that is unacceptable and
dumbfounding. A few of the numbers he ran out were " The 106,000 aluminum cans
Americans toss every 30seconds, or the 1 million plastic cups distributed on US airline flights
every 6 hours, or the 426,000 cellphones we discard everyday." While these are only a handful
of the examples it is still evident that this kind of wasteful thinking needs to change. Instead of
throwing away used devices try donating them. Instead of using plastic cups and bottles try
using a washable container. Instead of using plastic bags at grocery stores bring your own and
keep re-using them. One mans trash is another man's treasure is something smart to think
before you throw out an old cellphone or something you do not need anymore. I know it may
not sound convenient now, but it will be worth it when our earth is still thriving years from
now. The little waste is what needs to stop. Mckibben mentioned that "A hundred million trees
are cut every year just for the junk mail industry." This is a perfect example of what needs...

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