I have never seen ocean pollution like this, but it is only a matter of time, seeing that pollution knows no borders.
Who is to blame for this?
Me. You. Everyone, but most of all it is our local, state, and federal government.
In the good ol' days, we consumed products contained within the most horrible packaging in the history of mankind's many sins, and chucked the unwanted garbage into the garbage where it was buried under mounds of soil for unlucky future generations to contend with and clean up properly.
Somewhere along the way someone got the idea that it was ok to put all the garbage on barges and dump it off shore. I saw it first hand in NYC. HUGE garbage barges. I stared in awe at the audacity of New York- "Is that OK, I thought to myself?"
Someone musta heard my question, and I'm thinking that they do not do that anymore, but not sure. Who the HELL came up with that idea? I guess it was common practice seeing that the biggest ocean polluter in the history of mankind was/is the American Navy itself. "Dump it overboard!" was/is their mantra.
Then came shipping garbage oversees to countries where they pay five year old kids to dismantle electronics with small fires to extract the valuable minerals. Our old batteries dumped in third world asian countries so we do not have to be inconvenienced by our own waste.
At some point, shipping our waste oversees has stopped to some degree, and now we are stuck. Where does all this garbage go? You guessed it- we are back to burning it, burying it, and recycling just an infinitely minuscule percentage of it.
Americans are above getting their hands dirty. We sneer at the concept of recycling (among the lowest recyclers in the world), yet we produce many times the waste per person than any country in the world.
It is time to apply larger deposits on packaging. It is time to penalize all of us who do not recycle.
But ABOVE ALL, we need to pay for infrastructure that can handle the ridiculous amounts of waste that each of us generates on a daily basis.
If you look at this disgusting picture and think to yourself "It wasn't ME who threw that garbage into the ocean, Must have been someone else!"
You are wrong, it was YOU. It was ME. It's all of us.