Coal Tattoo

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Yesterday’s anti-mountaintop removal protest in Boone County clearly didn’t turn out exactly the way its organizers hoped. As of earlier this afternoon, four or the activists were still in jail, after being charged with battery for allegedly shoving their way onto a Massey Energy dragline.

As I wrote previously, what happened in the early morning hours at the Twilight Mine will be sorted out in criminal court. But surely both sides of this debate could agree to avoid any more of this nonsense on Tuesday, when the anti-mountaintop removal groups have planned a huge protest — scheduled to be headlined by actress Daryl Hannah (above, from the 1984 Ron Howard film, Splash) and renowned NASA climate scientist James Hansen (below), and longtime West Virginia political leader and strip-mining opponent Ken Hechler.

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I’m told that the event will focus on Marsh Fork Elementary school, which sits below a huge Massey slurry impoundment, and that after a few speeches:

… The crowd will march a short distance to Massey Energy’s office of operations. Standing in defiance at the Massey Energy property line of a mountaintop removal mining operation Dr. Hansen, Representative Hechler and dozens of Coal River Valley residents will risk arrest in a line crossing civil disobedience, the next big step in stopping mountaintop removal where it starts.