January 12, 2014

What's next, West Virginia?

I don't know how other residents of the Mountain State feel right now, but I think after the chemical spill in Kanawha County, all we need now is a zombie outbreak to make everything perfect.

I tweeted that sentiment yesterday and a friend replied, "It is a challenge, living in a state that is actively trying to kill you."

Come to think of it, West Virginia's leaders have a history of letting corporations get away with murder, metaphorically and literally. Kill some miners with poor safety practices? Why not. Spread some black lung around? Sure. Waste a few hundred putting in that Hawk's Nest tunnel? Go ahead. And don't even bother asking if it's just a matter of trashing rivers, streams and mountains.

That seems to apply to perpetrators with money anyway, although poor people don't seem to get away with nearly that much.

One thing that might be a little different this time is that it just isn't some poor hillbillies up hollers who are being inconvenienced by the latest chemical spill, but some of the big dogs as well. (Of course, most of WV's real rulers don't live anywhere near WV).

The latest word is that it could be days before things get back to anything resembling normal in affected areas. Oh yeah, and this: the state ignored a proposal to tighten up chemical safety practices a few years back.

Meanwhile, I love this rhetorical question another friend expressed in an email: "Hey? Have we cut government and regulations enough???"

One last thought. Living out in the sticks can have its disadvantages at times, but this isn't one of them. I'll take Goat Rope Farm's well to city water any day of the week.

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