Trash talk

It’s an idea that’s part Oscar the Grouch, part Maya Angelou: Give “spoken-word” artists a stage to express their frustration with litter in Philadelphia.

Friday at City Hall, five spoken-word artists, backed by a trio of saxophone, bass and drum players, performed updated versions of the old “Give a Hoot, Don’t Pollute” slogan.
“Pick it up if you see it. Philly needs a role model. Will you be it,” rapped one of the artists, Whitney Peyton.
Asked another, Carlos Campbell, who was clad entirely in purple, “All we see is trash. If you’re a product of your environment, what does that make you?”
The live performances in the mayor’s reception room launched Saturday's citywide spring cleanup, to be led by Mayor Nutter.
It’s part of a public awareness campaign that also includes TV spots by the same artists and aims to teach young people that trash goes in the can, not on the ground.
Philadelphia Streets Commissioner Clarena Tolson called it “not your mother’s litter education campaign.”

Click here for's politics page.