|COMMENT By Bob Weaver|
West Virginians claim to love their mountain water, but for decades now, they've ignored the slow toxic poisoning of their water and air and the effect it has on their families and children.
The 2014 chemical spill into Kanawha Valley water was fast moving, getting more attention.
An Associated Press analysis of federal environmental data found chemicals and waste from the coal industry have tainted hundreds of waterways and groundwater supplies for decades, spoiling private wells, shutting down fishing and rendering streams virtually lifeless.
While science is ignored, God only knows how the spillage, sludge and toxic air has harmed generations of WV mountaineers.
Environmentalists, originally called conversationalists, have long-been demonized as liberal hippies, out-of-state activists who are destroying progress, the free market and jobs.
During those decades, complicit environmental enforcers have more often than not, turned their heads while making enforcement noise, returning to business as usual.
Understandably, many West Virginians are held hostage for jobs.
Other West Virginians long-surrendered to the power of the extractors and their government supporters.
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, numerous times reminded state citizens that the chemical spill had nothing to do with the coal industry, a fascinating statement.
West Virginia's top law enforcement officer,
Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, is calling for a full investigation, while for months he has called for a reduction in clean water standards.
The current hubris for the health and safety of 300,000 West Virginians and other state residents, if history repeats itself, will fade following investigations, new regulations and lawsuits, and the "normal" will return.
"Again I looked and saw all the oppression that was taking place under the sun: I saw the tears of the oppressed--and they have no comforter; power was on the side of their oppressors..." - Ecclesiastes 4:1
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