I submit we need to change the Oregon state bird to the plastic bag.

Driving down the parkway and back up Third Street yesterday, I counted over 20 plastic bags. I saw them nesting on poles, gliding through the air, perched on trees and flocked against a fence.

Here is a simple solution: Have the stores charge for each bag, encouraging people to carry their own reusable bags. I lived in Norway for several years where they charged about 20 cents per plastic bag. It resulted in almost eliminating the bags. Plus it is way more convenient to carry out a big cloth bag rather than several plastic bags.

This is a four-for-one special. It will:

• Clean up our environment.

• Reduce (in a small way) oil dependence.

• Reduce prices (The stores will pass along their saving, right?).

• Make you feel good about contributing to a cleaner environment.

This act will allow us to take a tiny step away from the avarice of the consumer culture toward an ethic of altruism. (It’s not socialism!)

Kermit the frog was wrong. It is easy being green.

Rick Burns