This is in response to the letter, “Democracy Prevails in Ohio,” published March 2. Yes we are a democracy and we in southeastern Ohio also have the right to reject fracking or injection wells if we so choose. The fact is that Ohio’s environmental laws are among the weakest in the country and it is the reason that Ohio has been accepting radioactive waste, garbage from outside the state, and now fracking waste for years. Instead of listening to oil and gas propaganda, take a look at our laws. West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Michigan send us their waste because their states prohibit it under their laws. To add to this, the oil and gas industry has been given a pass and are not even governed by our existing Ohio environmental laws. We are one of the only states in the country that does not require that the contents of waste be made known. That’s why we have been the dumping ground for many states for far too long. The oil and gas industries can essentially do whatever they want backed up by a legislature that was elected with the support of millions of dollars in oil and gas lobbying money. There is no accountability or oversight. Some democracy. It’s not the one I learned about in school.
Jobs are not much good if we have poisoned our water and land and we are all dying of cancer, or have sentenced our children and grandchildren to death. Around the country there are hundreds of earthquakes where there never were any; towns that now have all their water shipped in; explosions, leaks of oil contaminating land and water, cancer and other strange illnesses and rashes. There has been no attempt to really look at all of this. All we get is denial from the industry that it is happening. Dig a little deeper. Read about what is happening in North Dakota and other places. Slowly but surely the rest of the country is also waking up as it affects them and are protesting underground gas lines built through their communities and thousands of trains carrying oil occasionally derailing and exploding. Again, some democracy when the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, there to protect us, is in bed with the oil and gas industry. Can’t even get a hearing. Some future. Some Democracy.