Posted by: coastcontact | February 19, 2016

Who Cares?

Events effecting local communities rarely receive national attention. Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Katrina are two that really received massive media coverage. The BP oil spill on the Gulf coast was another attention getter.

The greater concern ought to be government attention when the impacted communities are those of the wealthy versus those of the poor.

In Los Angeles the Southern California Gas Company had a huge natural gas leak, reported to be the largest such leak in American history, near the Porter Ranch neighborhood may cause vomiting, nosebleeds and other short-term symptoms, they say, but they have assured residents that it does not pose long-term health risks. The leak was first reported Oct. 23, 2015. The leak was stopped last week and permanently capped yesterday.

Porter Ranch has a $121,428 median household income (2008 dollars), high for the city of Los Angeles and high for the county according to the Los Angeles Times. Since the leak thousands of residence have been relocated by the gas company at their expense. The area has been blanketed with law firms offering to process suits against the gas company. The real Erin Brokovich visited the area representing a law firm.

Meanwhile the Exide battery factory in Vernon, an industrial community 15 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles has been operating since 1922. That factory has been spilling lead, arsenic, cadmium and other toxic metals on the ground and contaminating homes and yards in surrounding communities as well a ground water in the surrounding area these past 90 years. The people living in the nearby residential communities are all low income residents estimated to total 110,000 people.

Now the Exide company has agreed to close the facility. But where has the government been since 1922? Where was Erin Brokovich all these past years?

Will anyone in Michigan see jail time for the Flint, Michigan contaminated water system? Not only will there be no jail time it is unlikely anyone will lose their job.

Unless there is money to be made no one cares.

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