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Mike Brune's articles

Arrested in West Virginia: A First-Person Account

By Mike Brune

Jun 24, 2009

Mike Brune, executive director of the Rainforest Action Network, was one of 29 people arrested by West Virginia State Police yesterday while peacefully protesting mountaintop mining.

The horn blasted right outside the window where we slept early this morning.

"Wake up, losers!" two miners yelled from their pickup truck, gunning the engine. "Wake up! Time to get a job! Better yet, time to get the f*** out of town!"

Ah, yes. Mornings in the coal fields of West Virginia. For wake-up calls, I generally prefer morning crickets, birds chirping, perhaps the smell of coffee – I'll even take a few kicks to the ribs in bed from my little ones. Oddly enough, however, I must say I find taunts from belligerent coal miners to be highly motivational.

I've been in West Virginia the past few days to help bring an end to mountaintop removal.

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