Kentucky Sit In

Important events in Kentucky today as a group of protesters including Wendell Berry have staged a sit in at the Kentucky governor’s office today to draw attention to mountain top removal and clean water policies in that state. A very important issue and deserving of support given the lasting ecological damage caused by these policies and the immediate health concerns for those living in these water sheds. I’ll be trying to post updates on this throughout the day.

After the dramatic events in Egypt today, here’s hoping that we continue to see the power of peaceful protest to instigate change.


Jeff Biggers at Huffington Post

Kentuckians for the Commonwealth (They are supposed to have live video from the sit in though I’m unable to access it. I think this has more to do with my internet connection right now than anything with the KTFC website.)

Live tweeting: @jasonkylehoward and @kftc

Update 1: As Jeff Biggers has reported that the sit in is turning into a sleepover. More updated from Biggers at the Huffington Post link above.

Ways to make a point…

From the BBC we learn that Bolivian President Morales had to flee a public event this week due to protests from local miners over food prices. The emphasis here is that the miners were using dynamite to make their point. According to the BBC:

Setting off dynamite is a common feature of trade union protests in Bolivia, where the explosive is widely available to miners, but injuries are rare.

In some ways this harkens back to labor history in the United States, though from my sources I don’t believe it would come close to being called a common feature. Mostly I’m reminded of Pynchon’s character Webb Traverse from Against the Day. That said, let’s hope injuries stay rare.

Three Authors

Few things would ever make me want to be a high school student again. To be able to talk to Maxine Hong Kingston and Leslie Marmon Silko makes a valiant effort. With the addition of Toni Morrison to the evening and I could end up in negotiations.

As for substance, there’s not a lot in this particular story aside from the personally uplifting idea that three authors I think so highly of are friends and that we all have reason to be envious of those students while also happy that such programs exist. That said, and just an aside, I get hung up on one line of Alexandra Cheney’s write up of the event: “Silko, whose eyelashes followed her heartbeat in both timing and rapidity, feverishly spoke, leaving no time for questions.” Maybe it’s just me, but I have this image of Cheney taking Silko’s pulse while having some sort of blinking seizure. In short, an unfortunate bit of poetic license that breaks the mood.