Massey Scabs Try to Shake Protesters From Dragline
Fourteen MORE activists were arrested today in an act of civil disobedience to stop mountaintop removal “mining” in the Coal River Valley of West Virginia.
Four of the protesters attempted to scale a 20 story dragline and unfurl a banner. While high in the air, Massey Scabs (non-unionized mtr workers employed by Massey Energy) and Boone County Sheriff deputies attempted to rattle the tower. A fall from such heights would mean serious injury or death.
Not surprisingly, the Massey Scabs were not charged. To the contrary, the four protesters were charged with battery. Apparently, one of the scabs felt light-headed and had to be taken to the hospital. Yet even the Boone County Sheriff admits that the scab had a pre-existing condition.
Police and scab accounts of the event accuse the four protesters of “charging the dragline operator.” This is highly unlikely as it was mandatory for all participants to be trained in “Gandhian” non-violent civil disobedience. Moreover, I personally know most of the activists and all are extremely gentle.
But if it is proved that one of the protesters did lay a finger on the dragline operator (this wasn’t the person who went to the hospital), I truly hope that the bleeding hearts in the movement do not turn on this person. But again, there are just as many accounts that there was no shoving at all.
In the face of coal industry violence it is amazing that the residents of the Coal River Valley have maintained a quasi-Ghandian poise and commitment to absolute non-aggression.
However, if the coal goons continue to assault and attempt to murder with impunity, some residents of Coal River and elsewhere may not hesitate to defend themselves. And while arm-chair liberals will deplore acts of self-defense, in the final analysis, it is better to scratch the face of your raper than lie there and cry. Even Martin Luther King Jr. said he would kill the man who tried to harm his family (seriously, look it up).
Read about today’s event and find updates here.