We can now purchase yogurt and cottage cheese without becoming overwhelmed with guilt when confronting the empty container, as Akron's recycling program has been upgraded to collect and recycle all plastics labeled 1 through 7. I no longer have to bug The Mustard Seed about their number 5 plastic take-away containers. While I'm glad the city is boosting its recycling program, I still think we need to be more mindful of the amounts of plastic we consume and toss away on a daily basis. Look at all the plastic in your life that doesn't come with a convenient recycling number,such as plastic potato chip bags, plastic bubbles around electronic products, plastic windows in junk mail envelopes, plastic notebooks, lunchboxes, brushes and combs, your toothbrush and so on.
Along with the recycle upgrade, Akron officially launched its much anticipated Green Print (you can download it in its entirety here). The ABJ's Bob Downing summarizes the goals:
Suggestions include promoting green buildings; cutting the use of electricity; boosting water conservation; expanding the urban forest; increasing green jobs; encouraging neighborhood revitalization; better managing the city's fleet of vehicles; increasing parks and walkable areas; turning more sewage sludge into electricity; boosting recycling and bicycling; adding grass-covered roofs; limiting pollution in storm-water runoff; building rain barrels and boosting new urbanism and regional smart growth.
All of those proposed changes sound good to me. Too bad we aren't focused on making those changes realities. Instead, we must put up with a small band of opportunists who want to "Change Akron Now." They aren't talking about making positive substantial changes in Akron's environment. No, these are the folks who want us to kick out the mayor -- for reasons that range from petty to vindictive, as they can't seem to find anything illegal.
We all got to vote for the mayor less than two years ago at which time we could discuss and debate the mayor's policies and abrasive personality all we wanted. He had competition in the primary, won that race and then faced no opposition in the general election. Nothing I've read from the Change Akron Now folks has convinced me that I made a mistake in voting for Don Plusquellic in 2007.
The only good thing that can come out of this is that the political careers of the opportunists instigating the re-call drive come crashing to a halt when they fail to drive out Mayor Plusquellic. If anything, this recall election should wake up the electorate enough to consider who our future political leaders might be.