Thursday, August 2, 2018

If you think banning plastic straws is a mistake

I’m seeing three popular complaints with banning disposable plastic straws:

1. It’s not a complete solution.

Literally no one is saying that it is. Change has to start somewhere.

2. It inconveniences disabled people.

No one is talking about banning all disposable straws. Paper bendy straws are still available.

As for Starbucks offering paper straws wrapped in plastic, meh. Straw dispensers are ancient technology.

3. It’s a moralistic solution that blames the consumer instead of capitalism.

I’m a socialist, but this objection baffles me. We consume too much disposable plastic because of capitalism in general and the petrochemical industry in particular. Banning plastic straws is not a moralistic solution. It’s a systemic solution. What’s moralistic about telling capitalists they can’t have this market? By that logic, the automobile industry should not have been forced to provide seat belts.