Love doesn't love us
Deem doesn't deem us fit
But just really where are the jobs?
In late February, Fayette County Sen. Shirley Love railed against environmentalists from the Senate floor. He and some of his cohorts categorize air-breathers and water-drinkers as a special interest group. Love implied that we think it's more important to protect stream critters than to protect people from flooding.
The Beckley Register-Herald reported:
"Love used the occasion to plug a Senate resolution to study flooding in West Virginia, a constant problem, especially in southern counties, with an eye toward liberalizing steps that can be taken to rid streams of debrisOnce, it took a four-inch rain to trigger a flood, but now, in coal mining communities, Love said, all that's necessary is one inch of rain to unleash flood waters that engulf entire areas."
Did we hear Love rail against mountaintop removal / valley fill coal mining as a proven reason for increased flooding in the coalfields? Of course not!
The "liberalizing steps" sound a lot like the "Flood Thy Neighbor" bill. Every year, certain Senators introduce this bill, despite their lack of knowledge about stream ecology. These fellows haven't a clue about the web of life that supports us all, even though they, like all of us, are entangled in that web.
The Register-Herald continued:
"Afterward, Sen. J. Frank Deem, R-Wood, saluted Love, saying he agreed environmentalists exercise too much clout at the expense of landowners and job creation 'We don't have jobs because these people won't let us,' he said. 'A job is the most important thing in the world to most people. If you don't have a job, you don't have anything. Environmentalists keep us from creating jobs.' "
I'd bet most people would find breathable air and clean, drinkable water to be even more basic than a job, but a job is definitely next on the needs list.
Shame on Deem for using us as an excuse for his and other good ole' boys inaction.
A study called "Job Jolt" shows that the Midwestern states studied could create more than 200,000 jobs and $5.5 billion for workers by transitioning to truly cleaner alternative energies.
The Apollo Plan, mapped out by the Apollo Alliance (a broad coalition including business, labor, environmental, farm and civil rights groups) has even more good news. An independent economist found that the
Apollo Plan will create more than three million new jobs by investing in the transition to new, cleaner energy systems. The ambitious ten-year plan - mirrored on the first Apollo Project that put Americans on the moon in less than a decade - lays out the plan needed to rebuild cities' infrastructure, make our economy stronger and free of us our deadly energy habits.
We deem that something worth loving - and working toward.