There’s disturbing, there’s crazy, there’s outrageous, and then comes the sort of terminology which cannot be used on a family-friendly news and information website – even though we all know your kids have been using these words (and worse) for years now.
But rules are rules, so can we perhaps agree that the idea of charging Flint residents for their very own lead-poisoned water is some straight up…?
Because by now most of you reading this post are already quite aware that the citizens of Flint have been completely and totally ignored, discarded and abused by Gov. Rick Snyder who, even now, despite the timely delivery of several required apologies, just can’t seem to figure out how to completely and totally accept responsibility for the poisoning of an entire community that occurred on his watch as the state’s top elected official. There is no longer any way for Snyder to dodge the fact that this all leads back to his administration and his policies – including the policy that beefed up the emergency manager law. Because it was his appointed emergency Darnell Early – now emergency manager for Detroit Public Schools – who signed off on the deal that made it permissible to poison Flint’s children in order to save money.
But even as Snyder works the muscles in his face to appear as contrite and apologetic as possible, it now appears that Flint residents who are behind on their lead poison… I mean water … bills are actually being penalized by their local water department as if nothing at all had changed. Same as it ever was. Because, hey, lead poisoning happens kids. Still gotta pay your bills, even if you’re paying to destroy your own health. From the Detroit News:
“Residents of the impoverished City of Flint pay some of the highest water bills in Michigan. And those bills have not stopped coming or been reduced since state and local officials acknowledged the water is unsafe to drink without filtering.
“That’s wrong, says a growing chorus of residents and advocates.
“They say the State of Michigan — which has acknowledged significant responsibility for the lead contamination of Flint’s drinking water, which began in April 2014 and continues to pose a health threat today — should be picking up some or all of the tab.
“Given the potential health and infrastructure implications of the Flint drinking water crisis, the water bill issue could be small change in the big picture. But it’s galling for residents who get big invoices for water they now know they can’t drink, and that — in some cases — they and their families consumed before knowing it wasn’t safe. Lead can cause permanent brain damage in children.”
For the state to pay the tab on these lead poisoned water bills is only the barest beginning of making things right. What Flint needs is reparations.