Industry can create jobs, protect our environment

Published 10:32 am Thursday, June 3, 2010

I am writing in response to the letter by Nora Smith concerning jobs outweighing pollution concerns.

Mrs. Smith is probably well meaning. However, she tossed in some insults while breezing by the primary points the letter writer had made concerning pollution.

She began with the statement that she is disgusted about folks complaining “about a little emissions from plants” and a “That is what is wrong with our Tri-State today.”

She is taking considerable liberties with what the writer had stated. The letter I saw was concerning excessive emissions from plants doing damage to other people’s property.

I would personally disagree with the notion that people complaining about pollution from plants would even find its way to the top 10 of things “wrong with our Tri-State today.”

Mrs. Smith’s cause and effect scenario did not seem too factual either. i.e. people complain about pollution = plant shutdowns.

According to Mrs. Smith, Solvay, Barrett and Dayton Malleable were closed because “everybody griped.” The fact that the plants relied heavily on the struggling steel and domestic auto industry does not appear to be the primary factor to Mrs. Smith.

Nora Smith then shows us how to perform a little slight of hand by reducing the writer’s complaint to just “a little dirt.” Just use the following recipe.

No. 1 — Distort your opponents position

No. 2 — Argue against your own distortion.

The last thing I take issue with is Mrs. Smith applauding herself for caring for others while coming off of a rant that instructed others to “get out your broom” so her family, and “other mothers who have boys and girls making a good living” can profit.

I strongly support Mrs. Smith’s family and other mothers’ children having union scale jobs. I also strongly support industry complying with environmental laws that place restrictions on pollution.

Everyone knows that zero emissions from heavy industry is impossible. However technology allows far greater reductions than what we see in the Ohio Valley.

Asking that coal trains be covered to reduce the ill effects is a minor request. Caring about others goes beyond caring about other people’s checkbook; it also involves caring about the destruction of other people’s health and personal belongings that they worked for.

We have some of the highest rates of cancer and asthma in the country; these excessive pollutants certainly are a contributory factor.

Glenn Bennett

Catlettsburg, Ky.