No matter if I tried, I would never be seen as a Friend of Coal. I’m a bastard child, an environmental child.I know this.

Crystal Good

Yet I salute multimillionaire coal baron Jim Justice for what he’s doing for West Virginia’s tourism economy while protesting mountaintop removal with a vengeance.

Is it really possible to do both?


In my adult life I’ve come to understand the dualities and the “third” options because of my experiences: I am biracial.

My life has taught me that what black people say about whites is never 100 percent true. Neither is what whites say about blacks. There are always shades of gray. There is always room for investigation. There are always shades of Green.

I’ve learned to look first for the fear. Once you identify that, you can sift through whatever black/white/nigger/cracker/tree hugger/evil coal baron generalizations are being made.

Make no mistake: In West Virginia there is a lot of fear. Fear of not having jobs, clean water, healthcare, and on and on. Match that with some hell-raising, true grit Mountaineer spirit and, well, you’ve got yourself a debate and some Pinkerton police.

It can be deadly combo…

~Read the rest of OVEC board members Crystal Good’s blog post here, on her website.

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