Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Multimedia test

February 11, 2010

Mattea decries mountaintop; calls for 'civil discourse'

By RONNIE ELLIS — Grammy winning music star Kathy Mattea told about 600 who gathered on the state capitol Thursday in 25 degree cold to protest the mining practice known as mountaintop removal “there is a way to move toward civil discourse” on issues of coal.

Mattea grew up in West Virginia, the granddaughter of coal miners. Her new CD “Coal” pays tribute to “my place and my people.” She told the shivering but enthusiastic crowd Appalachia is “a place I know and it is a place that is part of me.” Thursday she spoke to those who came for the annual “I Love Mountains Day” at the capitol, sponsored by Kentuckians for the Commonwealth as an opportunity to lobby the mostly coal-friendly state legislature and governor.

But Mattea told them both sides need to work together, to lower the heat.

“We are not enemies – we are brothers and sisters in conflict,” Mattea said of those who vigorously defend coal and those – sometimes neighbors of the other side of the argument – who just as vociferously denounce coal, especially the extraction of it through surface mining and mountaintop removal. Not that there was much question of how Mattea views the practice which she said causes her “a deep ache” and which she characterized as “a covert war to decide who holds the power and what are our values.”

But she said it’s clear that war causes “deep harm on both sides of the conflict.” She said the time has come for both sides “to sit still and pen our hearts and feel the shared anguish.” Mattea spoke of miners and their families – “Everyone wants a way to provide for their family” – but also for those whose property, drinking water, and quality of life are damaged by mining – “Everyone wants to feel save where they live.” But, she went on, people living next to strip mines live in a “personal hell” and “black water runs from the faucets.”

Text Only
Multimedia test
  • 0407dinky_246.jpg Dinky engine is big deal for historical society

    More than half of the spectators watching the delivery of a piece of industrial history here Wednesday were gray-haired and some of them walked with canes.

    April 6, 2011 2 Photos

  • 042710_ACTC_Dedication_077.jpg Governor and legislators laud ACTC new EastPark building

    An investment in the future of northeastern Kentucky and the fulfillment of a dream, envisioned by the Kentucky General Assembly’s approval of the Higher Education Reform Act of 1997, were among the laudatory phrases repeated by several speakers on Monday.

    April 26, 2010 1 Photo 1 Video

  • ACTC Theater Slide Show: ACTC Theatre dazzles "Copacabana” The Musical, a lush tribute to the Technicolor musicals of the 1940s, started at Ashland Community and Technical College on Friday night. The Broadway-style musical fantasy features original songs by Barry Manilow and dazzling costumes, sets and choreography.

    April 10, 2010 1 Photo

  • Corner of Color Burst of color The best sign that spring is about to really take off is already in full bloom at Ashland’s Central Park.

    March 27, 2010 1 Photo

  • Pathway to the Cross Pathway to the cross A church in Huntington is offering a different kind of look at the Easter story this week.

    March 26, 2010 1 Photo

  • AYB Spring Performance Slide Show: Dancing into spring The Ashland Youth Ballet presented its Spring Concert at two shows Tuesday at the Paramount Arts Center.

    March 24, 2010 1 Photo

  • Landfill moving forward Officials hope Cooksey work will cut pollution, end fire hazard An agreement four years in the making has led to work at the former Cooksey Brothers Landfill, which regulators say will reduce pollution and end a long-standing fire hazard at the site.

    March 13, 2010 3 Photos

  • Lady Vikings ousted in state semi Rowan's dream run ends in semifinal Although the fairy tale didn't end with a crown, Rowan County's journey was magical while it lasted.

    The Lady Vikings ran into a merciless Louisville Mercy team that attacked with furious pressure.

    March 13, 2010 1 Photo

  • Rowan Girls Advance to Semifinal round Rowan hits jackpot of Final Four Rowan County set out a lofty goal at the start of the season, but very few teams actually accomplish what the Lady Vikings were going after.

    Four, to be exact.

    March 13, 2010 1 Photo

  • Rowan girls win in first round of Sweet 16 Rowan stingy with Breathitt Rowan County coach Scott Tackett can’t quite put a finger on it, but there is something special about the 2010 Lady Vikings.

    “We may not be the most talented team, but I get a feeling about this team that I don't get a whole lot,” Tackett said. “There’s something special going on here.”

    March 11, 2010 1 Photo