Marion, Kentucky

"I grew up here. I've been on every porch in this city.  When I was a boy I round the reel at the movie theatre and my sister and I sold movie tickets at all of the houses.  I worked int he coal mines for 27 years.  I was a union worker, so I got a medical card and services, but it wasn't the same for the non-union workers.  One friend had his leg taken off when a coal cart came down the shoot.  They didn't do much about it.  Now, I've got 2% black lung.  That means every two weeks, I get $250 in the mail from the federal goverment.  I guess that is how much 2% black lung is worth.    Of course, they'll never tell you those things will happen to you going in... and still don't.  People told me it was dangerous working in the mines, but there's more danger driving out on the highway.  And if we want electricity and energy- well someone's got to make it, right?"

“I grew up here. I’ve been on every porch in this city. When I was a boy I round the reel at the movie theatre and my sister and I sold movie tickets at all of the houses. I then worked in the coal mines for 27 years. Kentucky’s coal country. I was a union worker, so I got a medical card and services, but it wasn’t the same for the non-union workers. One friend had his leg taken off when a coal cart came down the shoot. They didn’t do much about it. Now, I’ve got 2% black lung. That means every two weeks, I get $250 in the mail from the federal government. I guess that is how much 2% black lung is worth these days. Of course, they’ll never tell you those things will happen to you going in… and still don’t. People told me it was dangerous working in the mines, but statistically there’s more danger driving down the highway than there is in those mines. And if we want electricity and energy- well someone’s got to make it, right?”

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