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Picking on pickers 

 

Editor:

With yet another cartoon picking on trash pickers who frequent the alleys of Eureka, I can't help but wonder if Mr. Mielke has a bit of an obsession about his trash ("Recycling Eureka Style," Feb. 7).

His premise: Eureka residents put out trash which is then picked by those who take "things of value" from the bins, followed by the Recology pick, resulting in a bill for services. It is positively Karl Rovian in its perverse presentation of information. As depicted, the sequence sways the viewer into thinking hapless pickers are absconding with trash of "value" while residents are stuck with a bill.

A few points of clarification:

Recology bills for trash services regardless of picked or non-picked bin status.

Recology increases fees if a resident's trash exceeds a limit; that means pickers are actually diminishing a resident's volume and perhaps saving money for the bill payer.

Trash is trash. If you put it in the bin, it does not have any value to you. If it has value to you, it isn't trash.

Monitoring your trash or believing it has value commences a downward spiral -- can you say "hoarder"?

Does the fact that folks must resort to trash picking make you wonder about the state of our safety net and the growing inequality in America? Rather than focus on who is touching "his" trash, perhaps Mr. Mielke could take aim at those who created the tough times and conditions touching those who resort to picking through garbage.

Sheila Evans, Eureka

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