Quarry is No Joke

Au contraire, Mr. Denton, the Winnsboro Crushed Stone mining application is not a foregone conclusion as submitted, nor is the argument at hand about the legality of what owners can or cannot do with private property.

Many people thoroughly enjoy recalling the quote regarding natural rights as “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” To look back in time prior to, and during the American Revolutionary War, this quote from John Locke would have read “life, liberty and property.” In a recent editorial (June 20) Mr. Denton mentioned how citizens have a right to do with their property as they wish in accordance with local, state and federal law. While I do not dispute this fact, I would like to draw attention to the fact that throughout history life has been listed before property, which was replaced by the pursuit of happiness.

The advance of industries such as mining has been a major factor in the development of this county and this nation. However, citizens maintain their right to life. Why should the hundreds of people living in the area surrounding this proposed mine have their lives disrupted for the sake of a handful of people becoming rich beyond their wildest fantasies? An inalienable right to life is granted to all in this great nation.

Continuing, I would like to note Mr. Denton’s phrase that stated: The Voice is “for the time being at least, completely neutral.” Why would he need to state this fact unless there is reason to think otherwise. Furthermore, Mr. Denton mocks our group’s investigation of the historical and environmental significance of the area, as he jokes about “the discovery of ancient Mayan ruins on the property, or a duck-billed platypus nest.” And he follows with an inappropriate comment about a Georgia chain gang.

In regard to the technical aspects of his article, many of Mr. Denton’s statements are rooted in misconception of actual law, specifically, the requirements of the S.C. Mining Act. The “Plan” submitted by the company to DHEC for approval is at this time lacking in specific details and burdened with promises that are wanting of significant data.

As of this moment, the mining operation layout as demonstrated on the permit maps is the least accommodating to neighboring properties and seems to invite environmental issues in the future. With reference to the aforementioned paragraphs, this mine is not operational yet. It is astounding to me to think this company feels that such a thoughtless, self-serving mining plan is significant for the citizens of Fairfield County. As stated Monday night in my presentation to County Council, “show me the data.”

I urge readers and editors to be skeptical and always fact check. This fight for reasonable accommodations for neighboring properties is not over until mining operations begin.

Dorothy Brandenburg

Winnsboro