Please Just Stop

I have officially become a political activist. Well sort of. I’ve started a letter writing campaign to all my elected officials from local to national. I plan on writing every week until I get a response. What has lit a fire under me?

Balloons. Not necessarily balloons in and of themselves, but the popular practice of balloon releases. I understand that the majority of these releases are done to ‘honor’ the memory of a loved one who has passed away. I totally understand the desire and need to honor those we have lost, however this particular practice spreads death to animals and destruction of our environment which is not honorable to anyone’s memory. Does anyone honestly think that this is something of which their loved one would support?


Or how about the fate of this poor creature who died from intestinal obstruction due to balloon fragments that when floating in the water mimic a food source – jellyfish.


I realize that I am writing from the Mid West about as far away from an ocean as you can get, but that doesn’t mean that local animals are not affected and not just from ingesting balloon remnants or becoming entangled in the strings, but just the very presence of something not natural to their environment can cause death.


I’m not trying to be a curmudgeon about events that honor those who have died, but why does the only option have to be so brutal to innocent and unsuspecting creatures? Why not plant a tree or bush? Why not create a group art piece that can be displayed? Why not organize a food drive? Why not volunteer to clean up litter in a park or area of town? There are so many other ways to show how much that person meant without doing something so destructive.

I want to believe that many are done out of ignorance of the issues the releases create, hence why I am writing an entire post about this issue. Get the word out! Stop this before it happens. This is such an easy fix that could have a big impact on animals around the globe.

To be clear I am not saying balloons are evil. They make events festive and make lots of people smile, but they must be disposed of in a responsible manner, NOT released into the air to land and cause destruction elsewhere.


If you would like to join in a letter writing campaign feel free to use the following template to send to your representatives.

Dear _________________,

I am writing to you to bring awareness to the issue of the damage that balloon releases cause to our environment. I understand this is not the most pressing issue to come across your desk, however it is important because anything that negatively affects our planet is important.

The purpose of most balloon releases is to honor a person who has passed away. The sentiment is beautiful, but the direct consequences are not.


I ask you to consider proposing legislation to ban balloon releases. This could be a great opportunity for both sides of the aisle to come together for a common goal – protecting our environment and the animals that inhabit it.

I look forward to hearing from you.