The plastic drinking straw, one of the smallest components in the mountain of trash remaining after the typical fast-food meal, has become an unlikely battleground in the war on waste.
A proposal being presented to McDonald’s shareholders at their annual meeting Thursday asks that the chain find alternatives to plastic straws at its more than 36,000 restaurants worldwide.
The vote is just the latest shot in a growing backlash against excessive and hard-to-recycle packaging in the fast-food industry, whether it’s plastic wrap, plastic foam cups, boxes, carryout bags or trays. The trash pile keeps growing.
If McDonald’s were to ban plastic straws, it wouldn’t be alone. Alaska Airlines just saidit is eliminating plastic drink stirrers on its flights. A few cities, most of them in California, have banned plastic straws.
While McDonald’s contemplates action in the U.S., it is moving ahead in the United Kingdom. It is replacing plastic straws with paper versions in some restaurants in a test this month.
Listen, I understand that plastic straws have become an epidemic in the pollution world. They’re so little and light that they’ve become some of the hardest things to recycle. We use so many straws in our everyday lives it’s crazy. At a bar they, for no reason, give you two straws with your drink even though we’re accustomed to drinking alcohol straight out of the glass/cup. For McDonald’s to switch from plastic straws to paper straws is just crazy town. If you like paper straws you’re simply a psychopath. You like to drink soggy paper while inhaling your beverage? Oh really? Well, you should move to Mars. You should be one of those people that signs up for Elon Musk’s one way trip to another planet. On Mars you can drink through all the paper straws you want, just as long as your millions of miles away from my face. Paper straws are one of the worst inventions on this planet. Yeah they save the environment a little bit, but they 1) cost more 2) completely take away from your drinking experience. You cannot possibly enjoy your straw falling apart mid-drink as your soft drink experience is ruined.
If you really think plastic straws need to go away then let’s just ban straws all together. What if McDonald’s just went with hard plastic, reusable cups like a normal restaurant does? Forget plastic covers, forget plastic straws, just drink out of a cup like we’ve been doing our entire lives? I think I just solved pollution across the wold? Was it that hard? Obviously when you get drive-thru you’re going to need a normal plastic up, cover, and straw. That aspect is pretty tough to avoid, but taking away straws and covers when you dine-in will cut-back on so much of the problem. Paper straws are the worst possible solution and if you support this I don’t want to know you.