I found this article on Yahoo today. Frankly, I was expecting something much worse...something more along the lines of "not all bags are made with recycled materials" or something about the length of time these bags would take to degrade and for the authors to go on and on with terrible, heart-wrenching statistics and pictures. The author mentioned these and while I do accept that these statements are true, it should be pointed out ANY bags are acceptable...what about all the free bags we get when we donate to different organizations/join clubs?
Nope, it was really just about the author deciding that a few folks' negative viewpoints were worth reporting. There was some mention of the bag production, but most of the commentary almost seemed geared toward reporting that people are afraid to reuse, due to public perceptions of the practice. Oh, and let's not forget the woman from NJ who (effectively) purchases 40 new plastic bags per week! Are these folks totally and completely out of touch with reality?
Who is not reusing the bags? Who is not taking competitors bags to other stores? I certainly do! Target doesn't care where I bought my bag, nor does Whole Foods. In fact, Whole Foods will donate .05 per bag for each bag you reuse, whether it says McDonald's or Safeway. Trader Joe's gives you a raffle ticket. I could give them an "I heart Nob Hill" bag and they could care less.
In the end, I am saving them money and keeping the plastic (somewhat) at bay. I will admit the first time I took a Whole Foods bag to Target, I briefly wondered if anyone would care...until I saw another woman checking out, with her Whole Foods bag filled to the brim with items from Target.
I really wish these reporters would do everyone a favor and TRY to put a positive spin on things. And to the woman in NJ? Ugh, that disgusts me. She could easily go to my favorite e-store and get any size bag she wants and many of them. They are FAR sturdier than plastic, can be reused for years, some give people gainful and sustained employment with fair wages, and don't make you look like you are deliberately trying to trash the environment because you are too good to carry a cloth bag. Good grief, what did our grandmothers carry?
Did they get little nasty plastic bags for produce? They rip easily and then what do you do with them? What is wrong with these bags? Everyone who has seen mine just loves them. You can use them again and again, they are much stronger, and what is this love affair with plastic? Aren't their enough chemicals in and around our foods?
Then again, our friend from NJ is loading up the plastic bags with diapers...enough said! And, yes, you don't have to remind me I used to do the very same thing...live and learn, right?
NOTE: Yes, there have been moments when I have forgotten a bag and , used a store bag. However, by ensuring I keep extra bags in the car, those times are few and far between. I should also add I would be more than happy to pay for said bag.
I still don't understand why more places in the U.S. don't jump on the "charge for a bag" bandwagon as they do in many other areas of the world. Bags ran almost 25 cents in Iceland. One either remembered their bags or managed to stuff a cartload of groceries into one bag...funny how one thinks about it that much more when they bear the cost...and why shouldn't we?