Mining Bill Fractures Community

March 3, 2013  By Maureen Matusewic

[Maureen Matusewic grew up in Hurley, Wisconsin, and recently moved back there. -Editors]

Dear Senators,

Sen. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, co-sponsor of the bill along with GTac, the mining company who wrote it, said in The Badger Herald that the legislation will avoid serious environmental damage, but in The cap Times is quoted as saying it will allow "neccessary" pollution.

Sen. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, co-sponsor of the bill along with GTac, the mining company who wrote it, said in The Badger Herald that the legislation will avoid serious environmental damage, but in The Cap Times is quoted as saying it will allow “necessary” pollution.

The mining bill is sliding into the final stage. I have studied the earlier bill and this new one for hours. My representatives at the state level have turned from the people of this state and given away more than I could ever think possible to mining companies in the name of jobs. My faith in Wisconsin government is gone.

The transmission line/huge power plant bill is going through without a stir. A proud pro-life senator brags about his Christianity and joyfully, willingly, kills the wildlife and nature to help a rich company from out of state make more of a profit. My faith in Christians is gone.

The poles for the mine are up, we have paid for these through the Public Service Commission. Millions upon millions upon dollars in a project I was told was because of woodpecker damage from the regional director of American Transmission Company. My faith in asking reasonable questions of companies funded by taxpayers is gone.

My local leaders, the people I went to high school, gave away the land my father and grandfather loved so much in a lease that allows this same company to fill beautiful wetlands and streams and trout rivers that my father’s ashes were spread in in order to help this corporation make more of a profit. My faith in local government is shot.

My neighbors and old teachers have turned on me for not supporting all this baloney. They are condescending to me when I quote the bill, when I express my concerns because they want jobs, and nothing else matters.

The Tyler Forks River with Carolyn Lake and the headwaters of the Bad River. This land is sacred ground for the Anishinaabeg, and provides the fresh water for the entire area. The mine will go directly in its path.

Carolyn Lake to the left and the headwaters of the Bad River. This land is sacred ground for the Anishinaabeg, and provides the fresh water for the entire area. The mine will destroy the headwaters. Photo: Larry Kinnett

The area you all wish to destroy so much for money is not your property. This area has recently had a very rare ice spike. I have been in contact with experts around the nation and in Canada regarding it. Native Indians believe it is a religious symbol. Locals say it looks like a “turdsicle.” Everything about Tyler Forks and Lake Superior is soulful. You are treating it, and those of us who love it, as non-existent, because you value money and the wishes of people with money.

I am beyond sad by the arguments and arrogance and lies.

Tell your mothers and your daughters and your granddaughters what you are going to do tonight. Show them this picture of the ice spike and tell them she is a turdsicle. Tell them about the coal plant and the clean water and how the Indians up here are subhuman like my neighbors do. Then tell them you hope other areas will be dynamited and destroyed as well. Tell them you are with Alberta Darling and everything she says.

The children and future generations will pay for your decision. Your daughters. Tell them why you don’t care about me or my children.

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One Comment on “Mining Bill Fractures Community”

  1. Esty Dinur March 3, 2013 at 9:53 pm #

    What is an ice spike?

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