The following column is satirical.
Due to the absolutely terrible coal-fired power plants on UK’s campus, more and more seniors have regressed into black sludge, like people with clouds of soot emanating from their mouths when they speak or cough.
It seems the horrible output of harmful materials spewing out of the power plants has taken its toll on students that have been here for four years or longer. I got a chance to talk to one of these “sludge people” when I saw him eating a dead squirrel and pulling his hair out.
“I didn’t used to be like this. It all started when I first came here as a freshman and with virgin lungs. I guess it started when I kept having to breathe in the sickly emissions from the coal plant that spill into the air here. It started off with my skin turning black, and then progressed when I started to notice that all of my footprints had a black, foul-smelling sludge on them.
“Eventually my spit started turning black and as you see, now my skin is completely black and I have the sludge coming out of all of my pores. It’s hard to even get anyone to talk to me so that’s when I started to live with the squirrels. They aren’t biased and they can accept me for who I am.”
UK students can see the “cloud of smog that can be seen for miles in our city.”
Using the Kernel article “Modern coal mining is essential for the future” from Jan. 16, 2012, one student wrote that the coal fired power plant is, “churning out the blue-gray smog that often hovers at street level, creeps into your parked cars, onto your faces as you stroll downtown and through campus, into your homes and ultimately into your lungs.”
That’s well put and it seems that the “sludge people” seem to agree.
One of the “sludge people” said, “Yeah that pretty much sums it up. That’s how it started with me. I had blue-gray smog assaulting me from all angles. I couldn’t escape it until finally I started coughing up soot and black powder. Whoever wrote that article has it completely right; those smog clouds are just terrible.”
After doing some observations, it seems that the author of the article on Jan. 16, 2012, was just scraping the tip of the iceberg. Not only does it “creep into your parked cars, onto your faces as you stroll downtown and through campus, into your homes and ultimately into your lungs,” but it also watches you sleep at night and sometimes goes into your fridge for your leftovers.
UK needs to look at these examples, take them seriously and stop the use of coal-fired power plants.
Not only because it could change the fate of UK students who would otherwise turn into “sludge people,” but because, and I think I speak for all of us, we would just love to pay a lot more money for electricity bills.
Jim Blackerby is an international studies senior. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.