Heaven Made of Plastic

Nicolás Escobar Gómez, Contributor

I remember the time when all the Columbus School 8th grade students were very anxious for going to the school’s annual trip to La Guajira. We were all waiting for the moment in which we were going to get to know the paradise. Everyone was way too happy, especially me, because I had already heard way so many stories about how La Guajira was as beautiful as the paradise, and how the place had incredible landscapes and unbelievable sunsets and precious vegetation and places. “What a place to go!  I’ll be going to see the most beautiful place on the planet”… was what I thought until February 18th, 2018.


La Guajira is the northernmost department in Colombia. It has lots of fame and good opinions about how beautiful this place was, but it  seemed to lose a big amount of merit thanks to all that makes this place look ugly. Yes, La Guajira, for many may be the most beautiful place ever, but for many it may be the most plastic polluted place in the world.


Massive amounts of vegetation, unimaginable places, and incredible landscapes just seem to look uglier every day in this department. Wherever decent amounts of people live, we can see how people unfortunately are not well educated, and thanks to this, not only Guajiros, but every other person that goes to La Guajira only makes it a more plastic polluted place. It is very sad, but this is the reality. If you don’t believe me, I’ll tell you an anecdote. In La Guajira, a kid with low resources, asked for a juice. The juice was given to him. Once he finished the juice, he littered it to the street, then he got asked  to not litter by the person who gave him the juice, so the kid picked it up only to throw it to the other side of the street. This anecdote just relates how the lack of education is making our society fall behind.


Now, going in the search of solutions. I think that before making our society conscious, we first have to educate them making everyone more conscious of what is the actual problem is. I don’t think that I am the only one who thinks this way, but I think that many people are also conscious of the importance of making people capable of taking care of their land. Like the famous saying, “if you give me a fish, you will remove my hunger for a day, but if you teach me how to fish, you will remove my hunger forever.” This same case applies for educating, if we make everyone conscious, then there will be more initiative for making a change.


In other words, educating will make a kid like the one who threw the juice, start making a change, like telling his friends and family why garbage is making such an incredible place like La Guajira  seem like a horrendous place. It is simple, why don’t we just begin to imagine a society in which all inhabitants and population are well enough educated, and like this they would have enough reasoning for understanding the situation that the department is currently facing, and why making a change now is important. Also, why don’t we imagine a society that each day becomes more perfect, and better? Well this is possible if we begin to educate our society.


To make the long story short, educating affected people with enough critical thinking and reasoning is the key for making these people into workers for the improvement. This begins in the home with parents talking to their children. Children can also teach their parents, especially those who go to school. Teachers need to talk to kids about these things, and receive training to be better keepers of the environment so that they can show that through their teaching. I would like to encourage you to not only have critical thinking and reasoning, but to have a heart, and like this make everyone conscious of the importance of taking care of the department. Like this La Guajira will become the same paradise as it used to be.