The situation in Flint, Michigan is absolutely tragic. It is a story of government incompetence, greed, and the utter failure of politicians and community organizers at the local and national level to address a critical health crisis. For those of you who don’t know, Flint has been poisoning its own people with high levels of lead in their drinking water for over a year.
The city government of Flint had changed the water supply for the town to a far more polluted source and then stopped using a chemical that retarded the leeching of lead by old pipes into the drinking water. The result of both of these failures is pollutants, heavy metals (including lead) and other unsafe elements being introduced to the population of Flint.
These high lead levels can cause birth defects, developmental problems in children, and both physical and mental health issues in those who are affected. Lead poisoning is a horrific problem that no family, Black or White, should ever have to suffer from in this day and age. The situation in Flint should to rectified quickly and the State should provide resources and care for those impacted by it, along with ensuring that this will never happen again.
The Flint water crisis has attracted international attention in the media and has made it to the halls of Washington, D.C and the Michigan Statehouse. The crisis has taken too long to get fixed, but thankfully the situation is getting fixed and families are starting to get some support.
This is a tale of one city in a horrible situation. But there is another town and many like it who are suffering from a similar, and in some cases even a worse problem, of unsafe drinking water, and there is nothing but silence for those communities.
Places like Prenter, West Virginia are drinking poison that isn’t just hurting the people, it is killing them. Yet while innocent White people are losing their lives, suffering from horrific cancers and diseases caused by corrupt politicians and crony corporations, there’s been no nationwide outrage. The problem is more acute and has been going on for decades, but you’re unlikely to hear about it from the anti-white media.
Scientists, health experts and environmental activists have investigated the situation in Prenter and other rural areas where coal slurry has poisoned the water. This man-made health and environmental crisis is afflicting thousands of White families around Appalachia.
The Wesleyan Argus summarizes the situation:
“Before coal mining corporations (Massey Energy in the area around Prenter) can sell coal to power companies, they must wash the coal to remove some of the most dangerous elements restricted by the Clean Air Act. They do this by using huge amounts of water (coal companies in West Virginia have used an amount of water 4.3 times the volume of Lake Ontario) and more than 50 chemicals (many of them known carcinogens), to rinse the coal until it is clean enough to be burned. The leftover sludge is known as slurry, and is a hazardous waste. Not only does it contain lead, mercury, manganese, and arsenic from the coal, but it also contains the chemicals used to clean it, many of which are secret because they are patented by Dow Chemical.
What is done with this poisonous sludge? One of two things. It is either put into sludge lakes, such as the one that collapsed inTennessee last December, or it is injected into abandoned mine shafts. The shafts are supposed to be lined with limestone and concrete, but this rule is poorly enforced and is often ignored by coal companies. Incredibly poisonous coal sludge is being injected into mine shafts, which are almost always uphill and upstream from communities. There are more than 692 known, suspected, or proposed injection sites in West Virginia alone. Bad idea.
As you would expect, the sludge does not always stay in the mine shafts, especially because of the 3 million tons of explosives that are used every day to destroy the mountains of West Virginia. In 2001, when heavy explosives began to be used to perform mountaintop removal on a mountain in Prenter, the water in Prenter began to become poisonous. When coal is not disturbed, it functions as an enormous carbon filter, making the well water in areas around coal seams some of the cleanest in the world. However, the blasting has released some of the coal sludge stored in mine shafts. The water is Prenter is now poisonous, and often runs black, red, or brown.
The Prenter water contains mercury, lead, arsenic, manganese (all at levels 10-250 times the legal limits), and, significantly, hydrogen sulfide gas. Hydrogen sulfide gas in the well water of one Prenter household was measured at 30 parts per million. To put this number in context: water that smells like rotten eggs has a rate of less than 1 ppm and in industrial facilities 15 ppm is the evacuation level. The drinking water in Prenter is twice the industrial evacuation limit. Hydrogen sulfide gas is extremely corrosive and can break a washing machine in about three months. Think of what it does to your stomach.
People in Prenter have developed many diseases and conditions, which are clearly related to the poison in their water. They seem to improve greatly and quickly when people stop drinking the water. Residents have developed a slew of various gastrointestinal conditions, urinary tract infections, and rare cancers such as esophagus cancer. On one street in Prenter, 98% of residents have had their gallbladders removed (the statewide rate is 3%). One man reported that three months after he stopped drinking the Prenter water, his intestinal polyps receded 40%. Other people who have stopped using the water for bathing stopped getting urinary tract infections.“
The situation for the people of Prenter and anyone in Appalachia hurt by coal slurry or the after effects of mining find themselves in a hard place. The Leftists and other radical environmental groups don’t seem to care much about poor White folks in need. When they do; they focus primarily on simply shutting the mines without providing economic alternatives for the communities in need. An example of this is the coalition group, the Alliance for Appalachia that states they simply want to end mountaintop removal and contribute to Green energy and new economic opportunities for the people of Appalachia.
The Alliance however rejected the Traditionalist Worker Party’s application to join their coalition due to our stances on issues that have nothing to do with the environment or health of the people of Appalachia. Leftist groups care more about Social Justice posturing than actually improving the lives of the people they say they care about. Being able to get “Teach for America” style White savior credibility for New York cocktail parties is all well and good, but the folks of these groups have thinly-veiled contempt towards the people and the culture of Appalachia.
The Conservatives on the other hand have fallen behind Big Coal in their “Friends of Coal” movement and see any attempt to regulate or clean up these environmental messes to be part of the Leftist agenda. Republicans and Democrats are in the pockets of Big Coal, but Republicans take their cronyism as a badge of honor. Republican lawmakers call for more mountaintop removal, less environmental regulations and less enforcement of laws meant to protect miners and communities from the harmful effects of mining.
This betrayal by the political class leaves working class families between a rock and a hard place. Both establishment parties receive huge amounts of funding from Big Coal and have done very little to invest in these communities to maintain the environment and provide newer, safer and cleaner jobs for the men of these communities.
While the people of Flint are angry, and justifiably so; the people of Appalachia should be in outright revolt! The people of Appalachia are being poisoned and killed by deliberate and systematic government policies. Children are suffering and no politicians are doing anything to fix these issues.
While we need to fix the problems with the water in Flint, hundreds of thousands of Appalachian’s need help as well! The Traditionalist Worker Party is beginning an outreach program to local communities to find ways to solve these problems, with or without the help of the current political Parties. It is up to us, as stewards of our people to raise awareness about the condition of Appalachian water supplies and to improve the health and environment for our constituents who live there.
In this tale of two cities, Flint Michigan is receiving aid. Prenter is not. It is up to our Party and the local men and women of the communities to take a stand for a better future, one where families can safely raise their children without fear of capitalists and bought off politicians poisoning their children. The suffering of many is no longer going to be allowed to happen in silence. Our Party will fight for these communities just as community activists are fighting for Flint so that hopefully the tale of both of these cities and all others like them will one day be ones of a better tomorrow.