Letter to the Editor

Get rid of billboard litter on roads

Thursday, April 7, 2005

To the editor:

Your articles on littering haven't mentioned once a form of littering that many consider to be the most offensive of all, because it's so obtrusive you can't ignore it, and because it does irreparable damage to our beautiful state. I'm talking about litter on a stick, or billboards. You cannot approach Cape Girardeau from any direction without these huge monstrosities marring the landscape.

Take a trip to Scott City or Fruitland. The number of boards lining this stretch of I-55 is embarrassing. And shame on Cape Girardeau for allowing an illegally erected billboard to remain at the foot of our beautiful new Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge. And what about the city's promise that no more boards would be allowed down there? Now there's a second board by the bridge. I think an explanation is in order about this broken promise. The billboard industry profits at the expense of everyone who thinks the beauty of this state deserves to be seen and thinks they should have the right to drive somewhere without being bombarded with advertising they don't want to see.

I'd like to propose that one way to clean up litter along highways is to get rid of the worse offender: billboards. Then, if someone wanted to advertise along our highways, the only way they could do so is by participating in the Missouri adopt-a-highway program.

DEE WALKER, Cape Girardeau