Time to try alternatives

We have a reputation.  We have a reputation to uphold and  a reputation to make. The students involved in VSTEP are living up to our reputation as proactive UVM students. VSTEP is working to inform the student body about how buying water bottles harms the environment, wastes money and contributes to unethical corporations.  They intend to prove to the students that it is easy to live without buying bottled water, which is — and yes this is an admitted fact — simply tap water with a snazzy label like Dasani. Ultimately, VSTEP would like a ban on selling bottled water on campus. The Cynic applauds VSTEP for their initiative and supports their cause. Why do we pay hundreds of dollars a year to have Coca-Cola take tap water and sell it back to us at an outrageous price?  Why are we paying Coke to contaminate our air with CO2 emissions and stuff our landfills with plastic? We are paying a premium for a small convenience.  No one is going to die if water bottles are no longer sold on campus — there are water fountains and refill stations everywhere. On Nov. 11, VSTEP is going to offer refillable bottles instead of plastic to remind us that carrying around a metal water container is a small burden in exchange for saving money and the environment.   We should support them. Their campaign makes sense — simple as that. VSTEP realized a problem — an addiction to harmful, overpriced water bottles that we don’t need  —  and they found a solution. Now they are turning their goal into a reality. Furthermore, we should admire them for their initiative.  They are not getting paid.  They are not getting extensions on their homework. They are doing this because they care, because it is right and they know they can make a difference. As students, we sometimes forget that we don’t need to wait until we graduate to change our world. We don’t have to stand by passively as injustice and wastefulness plague our campus. It is time that we come together and support VSTEP in their clearly righteous cause.  We are UVM students; we are not fools that get our own water sold back to us.  We do not waste resources and contaminate our world; we are not blind to our ability to make a difference.  That is our reputation.   Let’s live up to it.