Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Quick Comment on an Anti-Drilling Blog:
In Defense of Those Who Protest the Protest

Pro-gas landowners in upstate NY have put together a welcome wagon of sorts — to occasionally greet their frack-fearful counterparts at certain local happenings.  This was part of the display in the parking lot of the Vestal American Legion, just before a traveling group of anti-drilling lecturers took the stage.
On June 22, pro-drilling landowners loosely organized by the Joint Landowners Coalition of New York essentially crashed an anti-drilling roadshow held at the Vestal (NY) American Legion. 

(Technically, "crashed" is not the right word, because the meeting was open to the public.  But you get the idea.)

If you'd prefer to hear about all this in a mocking way that takes the pro-drilling side, go to this post from Energy In Depth's Northeast Marcellus Initiative — where industry is now openly employing writerly firebrands at the level of street organizer, similar to the way that unions, social justice, and other left-wing-activist organizations have long operated.

Or, if you'd rather hear about it in a sympathetically anti-drilling way, check out this post from Sue Heavenrich's generally not-to-my-taste Marcellus Effect — a blog which appears to represent nearly two years of subtly persuasive journalistic labor (and probably very little of it paid for).

Or, if you'd rather hear about it from a professional journalist with theoretically no financial, social, psychological, or ideological stakes in either side of the Late Great Hydro Fracking Debate — sorry, I don't think anybody was there, other than TV people, and I don't consider TV people to be professional journalists, at least not most of the time.

Anyway, comment number three on Heavenrich's blog took me by surprise.  It goes like this: 
Anonymous said...

This militant group that supports drilling known as the Joint landowners colilition of New York, normaly uses direct action type of protest when attending NYRAD events with speakers. They show up disrupt the event and then after NYRAD came out with the clean water signs they bought a bunch of them and placed JLCNY stickers over the NYRAD website printed on the sign. The funny thing was this was the second time at a NYRAD event where the Vestal Police had to show up due the militant type of protest the JLCNY seams to favor. This group seems to have a type of rabies that makes it imposiable to have a dialogue with them.


Councillor, Great Bend Borough
Unless this was posted by an imposter (or, rather, an imposter who's not a very good speller), this appears to have been quickly written — with a typo — by Bret Jennings, whom Google searches show to be an anti-drilling elected official on the Borough Council of Great Bend, on the Mighty Susquehanna, upstream from Binghamton, NY, in Susquehanna County, PA.  Jennings also appears to have a hand in directing the sewage treatment plant down there, and — for the sake of my buddies in Binghamton — I hope he does a better job with that than he does with his pronouncements against pro-gas landowners.

Anyway, it bothered me enough that I wrote in to Heavenrich's blog, and I choose to re-broadcast my remarks here — in order to keep them on record for a little bit longer, and in order to get the word out to fundamentalists on all sides.

NY Shale Gas Now said...

The comment from BrettJ is intriguing to me in the use of such loaded persuasive imagery as "militant," "disruptive," and "direct action" — to describe the fact that pro-drilling landowners organized themselves in order to essentially protest the anti-drilling protest.

If you are committed to the traditions of protest and free speech — as I believe most anti-drilling people are (or would be, if reminded) — then you must accept the fact that ordinary people are sometimes also going to strongly disagree with you — occasionally in noticeable, dramatic (and, yes, even somewhat disruptive) ways.

No, I was not at this meeting. But — frankly, judging from the pictures, and from what I've read about it elsewhere, and from the pro-gas landowners I have met — many of these people are the very same sort of folks as you'd find at a fireman's pancake breakfast anywhere within upstate.

I don't believe taking it to the streets is much a part of their tradition, or part of their fate. (But — the way things are going — who the hell knows.)

But look how quickly the word choices demonize.

1 comment:

Core Bit said...

The coordination between protection for natural resources from drilling and the authorities to ad-mist and guide the drilling project. there should be proper dialog in order to resolved this problem.