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Stop littering, save Blacks Run

Blacks+Run+runs+through+the+center+of+Harrisonburg+city+and+is+often+polluted
Blacks Run runs through the center of Harrisonburg city and is often polluted

Blacks Run runs through the center of Harrisonburg city and is often polluted

Iris Cessna

Iris Cessna

Blacks Run runs through the center of Harrisonburg city and is often polluted

Iris Cessna, Feature Editor

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It’s all too easy to not care. You might drive by. You might not even be aware that Black’s Run exists, or that that is the name of the little stream that winds like a snake through our town, penetrating the surface every now and then to make room for a parking lot. Other things take up more attention for everyone; we all care about anything and everything else more.

 

Black’s Run is one of the few bodies of water in the area that has its headwaters in the midst of a city. Most everything else starts as a mountain stream, or starts deep in a pile of cow poop. It has an advantage and a disadvantage that way.

 

There are efforts to clean it up, though. On Saturdays, a hundred people fan out to remove trash from all the nooks and crannies. On that day, a person who didn’t know what was going on downtown might be confused as to why they couldn’t throw a stone without hitting a bright orange trash bag. Other efforts to clean up the creek are generally smaller, so less noticeable. Who knows how many of those there are, but a glance at any section of the creek says not often enough.

 

Half an effort would take away many of the visible pollutants. It wouldn’t take exhaustive work on anyone’s part. Areas of the streambank have more cigarette butts than sprigs of grass. If those in the area of the creek, a tributary of the stream, or even just in the watershed (all of Harrisonburg) thought about downstream at all, or even just the world around them, this would not be so.

 

I can’t say I’m not guilty of forgetting about the health of the environment sometimes. And not everyone is willing to pull plastic bags out of the e. Coli infested waters. I get that. But everyone should be willing to not toss in their Target bag to begin with. I hate to break it to you, but trash cans do exist.

 

I understand that this won’t happen. Target bags seem to be magnetized to Black’s Run. But more of an effort should be given.

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Stop littering, save Blacks Run