Appalachians Know “The Look” of The Flooding

The link to Silas House’s op ed should function as a “gift article” and not be subject to a paywall. — EDG

I had to study awhile to figure out why Mae Amburgey seemed so familiar to me. I realized it was because I had seen that same look on my mother’s face when we escaped the flood all those years ago. Hers is the face of so many who have come before her and who will come after, of all people who have had to fight to survive. I’m haunted by the weariness and determination in the eyes of Chloe Adams. Hers are the eyes of so many children from all over the world who are powerless against others’ greed.

They are my people not only because they are Appalachian, like me, but because they are human beings. They are familiar faces because they are all of us, caught in the clutches of entities that have more rights than we do as individuals, including companies that so often get favors from politicians like McConnell and Paul, neither of whom have even shown up in the devastated place they are meant to represent. (McConnell said he planned to visit the region, and Paul said at a Louisville news conference that he would “try and get out there as soon as we can.”) They are ourselves and our children and our grandchildren in the near future; the climate crisis is happening now.

Silas House, The Washington Post, August 5, 2022

Photo credit: Larry Adams

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