Not in my backyard (NIMBY)

Mesabi Misadventures Blog
June 2, 2009

Hear ye, hear ye, I do declare
to all of you protesters who proclaim to care
about the soil, the water, the air
have you considered your lifestyle,
do you dare?

You protest the mines, the pipelines, the landfills,
while claiming our future is in solar and windmills.
You use fear tactics, create mountains out of molehills.
You neglect to see your role in the world,
your consumption equaling the mines and the oil drills.

You want your fancy house, your car and your things.
Your flat-screen tv, designer clothes and diamond rings.
You claim all you want is to protect those with fur, gills or wings
You send your pre-made Sierra Club letter to your congressmen
and never experience the result that it brings.

Solar panels and windmills aren't made with pixie dust.
They require glass, plastics and metals coated so that they won't rust.
They seem so "green" and they give you the conscience for which you lust.
But their raw materials came from oil rigs and mining sites.
In that fact, you can trust.

You want to consume your goods.  You want to buy, buy, buy.
You live in denial.  See the truth?  You'd rather not try.
Your lifestyle must come somewhere in the world, that's no lie.
But you'd rather not have to live with the impact
whereas I would prefer to have it nearby.

In Minnesota, we have MSHA, MPCA, DNR and strong unions.
Overseas, environmental regulations are rare and their land is in ruins.
For that ring on your hand, they slave under deadly working conditions.
You want all that you have and even more
but you don't want to live with the consequences of your decisions.

You drive your hybrid with the nickel-metal hydride battery pack
and a "Ban Sulfide Mining" bumper sticker ironically placed on the back.
You protest Cu-Ni mines with the vehemence of a junkie who needs crack
never once considering the source of the nickel in that battery
or the metals that comprise the laptop in your backpack.

You ask me how I can sleep at night, knowing that I work at a mine.
I know I'm fulfilling a need and my ethics are sound, so I do just fine.
We have to accept that our actions have consequences, yours and mine.
I care about the global environment, the workers and their families.
NIMBY is selfish and that's my final line.