Letters to the editor

Readers respond to articles on recycling, dogs, and more.


Barbara Moran’s article on the challenges Boston faces in raising recycling rates through a single-stream strategy (“Out of Sorts,” July 14) captures key factors as we weigh the cost, quantity, and quality of recycled materials. But it leaves out one important component: the workers. Just because a job is “green” doesn’t mean it is safe and well paid. The broken glass mentioned in the article is not just a “quality issue” but one of many hazardous exposures for these workers, such as unknown chemicals, dead animals, and blood-borne pathogens. Boston’s recycling processors are exempt from the city’s living wage ordinance, providing mostly temporary and minimum wage employment. As the next mayor of Boston writes new contracts for recycling services, let’s make sure he or she factors in all the costs: environmental and human.

Tolle Graham

Labor Environment Coordinator MassCOSH (MA Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health)


We can all contribute by reducing, reusing, and upcycling. Making toys and games out of plastic products is especially fun to do with little kids, and supermarket bags provide unlimited free knitting materials.

Barbara Smith

South Hamilton

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Really fascinating, understanding the reality of what happens after you set it on the curb. Would the pay-as-you-throw system generate more trash in the streets?


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I have been a recycling professional for 20 years. . . . Pay-as-you-throw, now being renamed SMART (Save Money And Reduce Trash), surprisingly has not been shown to increase illegal dumping, according to just about every municipal solid waste manager who has implemented it.



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That any municipality is still resisting pay-as-you-throw is simply not acceptable. What are we waiting for?

Paula McCarthy



A lovely, poignant tribute by Greg Harris to his dog (Connections, July 14). I’ve been down this same road on more than one occasion, and I still can’t figure out why I continue to do so. I believe it is because I learn with each of my dogs more about the now and the point of time as a treasure.

Mary Kay Feely


If the author never writes another line about dogs, he should be assured that the final sentence in his column gives him immortality among dog lovers.

Arthur Layton


Thanks for this essay. With a sniffle, it made me put down the paper and jump in the pool with my kids.

Jasson S. Cohen



Miss Conduct’s response to the question about a wedding shower interrupting a vacation (July 14) offers the opportunity to share with you a word my wife and I coined. “Oblication”: when one is compelled to use precious vacation time to attend a family function.

Fred Benjamin


CONTACT US Write to or The Boston Globe Magazine/Comments, PO Box 55819, Boston, MA 02205-5819. Comments are subject to editing.

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