Mike Clark, “board member of SAMS, resident of Big Stone Gap, VA”
“We did the SAMS booth at the fair for about three nights this year. And we had strip miners come by and say, ‘if you could provide a green job for my family, I would love to quit doing what I’m doing.’ So you know that there’s people on the other side that wish they weren’t doing that job, but it’s what feeds their family. And you can’t help but feel for them, because they’re really between a rock and a hard place. The coal companies just keep spreading this fear that, ‘if we’re not here, you’re not going to be able to live. We’re the ones that supply you with a living and put you’re children through college.’
Then a lot of people think that we’re a real minority around here, that belong to SAMS. The main thing that got me involved in it was the proximity of our church to Ison Rock Ridge. It’s my belief that God created this county and this land and this earth for us to enjoy, not destroy, and for us to be good stewards of. And that’s what I like about SAMS, that’s we stand for- is being stewards of these mountains that we live in and we should stand up for that.
We’re blessed to live in a country where we can stand up for the things we believe in, some countries don’t have that right. I guess that’s why our men and women go fight for us is for our right to vote, for our right to stand up and have a voice.“