Monday, May 16, 2016

I Love Mountains

Dear Joe,

Remember “Sink-Sink,” the federal prison in Martin County, Ky., that’s slowly sinking into the earth because it was built on a former strip mine? Another Appalachian community might soon be facing this same form of “reclamation,” and they need your help fighting it.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons has proposed to build a $444 million maximum security prison on an old surface mine near Roxana, in Letcher County, Ky.

After the government regulated strip mining in the early 1980s, this surface mine near Roxana was chosen by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife as a prime location for its deer restocking program.

Now, the Bureau of Prisons is proposing to build a maximum security prison on it. The Kentucky River will be impacted by sedimentation and excavated mine spoil, and up to 93 acres of endangered bat habitat will be cleared.

In some communities, up to 25 percent of the land has been damaged by mountaintop removal coal mining. We need real reclamation, not boondoggle prisons that are unsafe for the community and unsafe for the people who would be incarcerated there.

As Letcher County resident Mitch Whitaker wrote in a recent op-ed, “This piece of property has already been imprisoned, and it’s just now getting back to the point of literal and figurative liberation. Why do it again?”

For the mountains,

Ada Smith
Whitesburg, Ky.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

I'm a Pickin' and I'm a Grinnin'...A Song I wrote for my Mother--Mama's Star

I joined my ol' Buddy Jeff Bridges and Team No Kid Hungry, Hope You Will Too!

My old Pal The Dude/Jeff Bridges turned me on to a most worthy cause in the No Kid Hungry Campaign. One in five Kids in America struggle with hunger and it's a national crisis that threatens our nation's future, and the children's. Please join us at No Kid Hungry | End Child Hunger in America