Dear 18-year-old Kid with Dreadlocks & a Grateful Dead T-Shirt… ~ Cassandra Smith

Via on Jul 10, 2012

Barely Relephant Bonus: Date an Eco-Responsible Boy. 

Bonus: The “Eco” Corn Cup: Trojan Horse for GMOs.

If you throw one more cigarette butt on the ground, I’m going to kick your ass.

You are not cool just because you are at Wakarusa/Summer Camp/Bonnaroo/Electric Forest and haven’t showered in over a week. You are not a true hippie, and you are not recreating some mythical Woodstock.

What you are, in my opinion, is an eco-asshole.

If you’re going to call yourself a hippie, or try to live a Woodstock-inspired lifestyle by frequenting today’s music festivals, please pick up your trash. (And even if you’re not trying to call yourself a hippie or recreate Woodstock, please pick up your f*cking trash!)

The Woodstock generation is the same generation that first spoke up about the damage we are doing to our earth everyday. The generation that started these festivals we love so much stood for peace and love, but also for protecting our beautiful planet.

If there was ever a time to recreate to the Woodstock generation’s passion for saving the environment from the devastation of a consumption based culture, it would be now.

But instead, all I see are teenagers throwing processed food, plastic and cigarette butts all over the beautiful places festivals are held. By doing that, not only are you disrespecting a place you paid to be in, you’re also giving the middle finger to the people that hoped these kinds of festivals would inspire change.

I know you probably think it doesn’t matter if you litter because someone else is paid to pick it up later.  To me, using that logic is the same as not brushing your teeth because you have a dentist you can pay to do that.

Shouldn’t we all be accountable for properly disposing of our own trash at festivals? Shouldn’t we all be working together to create the best experience for everyone?  It’s hard to have a good experience when you step barefoot into a plate of day-old peperoni pizza.

Most of these festivals even make vast efforts to make it easy for you to not be an eco-douche. They have trashcans every 50 feet with signs that explain what can be recycled and composted. Is it really that hard to use them?

If we keep trashing the venues we love so much, they will lose their beauty. Then, where will our grandchildren party?

In order to protect our festival venues for future generations, I think the solution is quite simple. All you have to do is self-enforce a Leave No Trace policy and “never let it hit the ground.”

I saw and learned how this works at Burning Man, where the amount of littering is close to zero. All of the participants work together to keep their environment trash-free and take all of their trash with them when they leave.

It may sound annoying to you, but the practice of leaving no trace helped create such an amazing experience for everyone that it inspired me to continue to do so in my daily life (as much as possible).

So please, pick up your trash as festivals (and everywhere else); it’s really not that hard. And if you already do, please help me to remind those who forget.

burning man

Change starts with you.

To learn more about the efforts music festivals are making to become greener, please check out these sites:

Electric Forest: Electric-ology Progam.

Bonaroo: Greening and Green Activism.

Sonic Bloom: Keep the Scene Green.

Wakarusa: Recycalusa.

Summer Camp: Festival Greening Initiatives.

~

Coachella.WhoWoreWhat08

 

 

Bonus: Yoga Festival Packing Checklist: Top Ten Things to Bring.

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Cassandra Smith was formerly an editorial intern at elephant journal and and is currently the social media and marketing coordinator at Gabriel Sales.  She is a fifth generation Colorado native who believes dance has the potential to liberate human consciousness from its cultural prison.  Cassandra formerly trained at Boston Ballet and recently graduated from University of Colorado Boulder with degrees in journalism and sociology. Visit her website at cassandralanesmith.com, and follow her on Twitter.

 Like elephant Green on Facebook.

About elephant journal

elephant journal is dedicated to "bringing together those working (and playing) to create enlightened society." We're about anything that helps us to live a good life that's also good for others, and our planet. >>> Founded as a print magazine in 2002, we went national in 2005 and then (because mainstream magazine distribution is wildly inefficient from an eco-responsible point of view) transitioned online in 2009. >>> elephant's been named to 30 top new media lists, and was voted #1 in the US on twitter's Shorty Awards for #green content...two years running. >>> Get involved: > Subscribe to our free Best of the Week e-newsletter. > Follow us on Twitter Fan us on Facebook. > Write: send article or query. > Advertise. > Pay for what you read, help indie journalism survive and thrive—and get your name/business/fave non-profit on every page of elephantjournal.com. Questions? info elephantjournal com

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348 Responses to “Dear 18-year-old Kid with Dreadlocks & a Grateful Dead T-Shirt… ~ Cassandra Smith”

  1. Jay says:

    Well by reading who ever wrote this is a person with problems themselves. Cassandra Smith. Sounds like a rich stuck up person.Its called a change and you may hold the same events but different people come in all the time. You should adapt to the new age and the people make quite a bit of money on these events maybe. if they paid their clean up staff good they'll have a clean place. It's common sense. Its doesn't matter. it happends at every kind of festival. Also when you have a bunch of people either on coke, acid, mushrooms or molly your not going to expect the normal things to happen. You allow people to party wich means people are gonna let loose. Its common sense. If you want to complain and youre sick of it then disapoint everyone by never having them again or with all the money pay youre staff extra. Other than that dont complain and talk smack. take action and make a change. Again You can't control everyone and not everyone is going to follow the rules.

  2. cassandralanesmith says:

    Thanks for your comment Matthew! I definitely agree with you, and I'll check out that article!

  3. Bibif says:

    It took a week to clean up the litter left behind after Woodstock. Do not use this festival or the “hippies” as an example of how to behave. They were litterbugs.

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