Give me a break.
Mountaintop Mining Activists and Environmental Champions, known by some to be, how might you say, tree huggers, have spent today, a wonderful late summer afternoon in the mountains of West Virginia, calling the world's attention to how Nike and West Virginia University are destroying the mountains by issuing a football uniform designed to be a tribute to coal miners.
This is just about as much irony as a Mountaineer can stand.
The Champions actually think, if you don't save the mountains you must be some dumb hillbilly.
Well, folks, this dumb hillbilly, this ridge runner from the steep ridges of West Virginia, is going to define the word irony and apply it to the present situation.
Irony is the use of words to convey a meaning that is the opposite of the literal meaning.
So, when a Champion states that the mountains, with the mountaintops, are good for West Virginia, said Champion, who conveys the meaning that the untouched, unfettered mountains are the only way the state can exist, is practicing irony.
This Champion, who probably doesn't know irony from a hole in the ground, actually used irony and didn't know it. This Champion didn't know it because they are essentially unaware of the literal meaning of "good for West Virginia."
The literal meaning involves removal of some mountaintops. That's the ugly truth. But, that mountaintop removal allows West Virginia to employ tens of thousands of miners to mine the coal under that mountaintop as well as the miners who go underground.
As I move from the English lesson on irony to economics topic of supply and demand, the coal is sold worldwide, which brings worldwide currency to West Virginia, and while we're at it, keeps the lights on.
Last I checked, Environmental Champions used lights.
This mountaintop removal has additional benefits in that it opens spaces for recreation, like golf, hunting, and fishing, and opens spaces for massive retail establishments like Wal-Mart, Sam's, and Gander Mountain.
Demand beget supply as Euros are converted to American money, the exchange medium of choice here in "Almost Heaven."
So, tell me, Environmental Champion, with regard to Jeff Goldblum's character and his question in the 1984 motion picture The Big Chill, have you ever gone a week without stepping into a Wal-Mart?
The answer's probably "no."
So, find another cause, save another snail darter, and do not blaspheme our tribute to coal miners everywhere. It's nice to know that some people in the world are sincere, and in this case, Environmental Champion, those people would be the dumb hillbillies.