The story coming out of Flint Michigan is not new. I hope you are following it. This week Michigan Governor, Snyder made an official request for aid from the federal government to help resolve the grave, and likely criminal problem with the water supply of Flint Michigan. President Obama approved the request, and so it appears that some help may be on the way.
The problem is this; more than one year ago an “emergency manager” appointed by the republican governor, made the decision to switch the water supply of Flint Michigan, from the clean waters of Lake Michigan, to the dirty and polluted water of the Flint River. The “emergency manager,” who reports directly to the governor (and not the elected local government), and the republican administration of Governor Snyder claim to have done environmental testing of the waters before making the switch, but it was obvious from day one that they did not, because the water coming out of the faucets throughout the city, was brown, brackish and caustic.
This water was so acidic that it corroded the century old system of pipes in the city’s water system (which many cities have), more importantly it corroded the lead welds (which were common one hundred years ago when the water system was built), and it released that lead into the water. The entire town has been poisoned with lead, and the republican administration of Governor Snyder ignored the evidence of this for more than one year. They fought its publication, and produced fraudulent, contradictory reports about the hazards to the community.
Now, in the face of persistent, overwhelming evidence, they have admitted that there is a problem. They began a feeble effort to provide the one hundred thousand citizens of Flint with bottled water, and “Britta” water filters, and they have asked the federal government for help.
These possible solutions, whatever may come of them, do not address the fact that the citizens of Flint have been poisoned, not by their own elected government, but by the government of Rick Snyder.
State and Federal criminal investigations have begun.
This is what happens when the right wing gets total control of a state government. The Michigan government is completely controlled by a republican legislature and a republican governor. In 2012 they passed a law to giving the governor the right to strip local governments, elected by the people, of their powers, putting in place “financial managers” with sweeping powers, to purchase, sell and reallocate community assets. The disaster in Flint is the most grave, and deadly of the disasters they have caused, but it is only one among many examples of right wing incompetence and corruption.
Pay attention to these stories. Join the chorus of people demanding justice in Flint.
If you empower republicans, this could happen to your community.