“Coal deserves credit for the greatest material prosperity mankind has ever known.”
Ed Hiserodt writes in the New American:
Coal is very low on the scale of subjects for ballads or charming folklore. Like Rodney Dangerfield, it just doesn’t get any respect. What does a naughty boy get in his Christmas stocking? A lump of coal. As a career, few brave souls outside Appalachia would have a goal in life of riding a rail car several miles — down several thousand feet below the surface — to attack the “face” of a coal seam. The thought terrifies me — and probably many others.
Coal is not the most pristine mineral in the world. Yet, more than any other mineral on Earth, this ugly, dirty little rock deserves credit for the greatest material prosperity mankind has ever known…