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Opinion: Don’t let President Trump send coal workers back into the mines

Coal miners wave signs as then-candidate Donald Trump speaks at a rally in Charleston, W.Va., in May 2016.
(Steve Helber / Associated Press)

To the editor: My father was born in Pennsylvania; his father — my grandfather — was a coal miner who always said, “None of my boys will go down into the mines.” And none of them did. (“Despite Trump’s bluster, rolling back Obama-era environmental regulations is not a done deal,” editorial, March 29)

Instead, during the Great Depression, all of my grandfather’s sons became skilled workers. But in 1948, with three young children, my father’s company folded, and finding new work was difficult. My family went on “relief” — which is what we called welfare back then — and the five of us lived in a one-room apartment above a bus terminal.

Eventually, our savior arrived in the form of Howard Hughes, who hired my father to work in his California factory. Dad worked at Hughes’ company for decades before he retired. All of his children became skilled workers; I retired in 2009 after a 48-year teaching career in Los Angeles community colleges.

None of my grandfather’s sons worked in coal mines. They found their ways as skilled workers during the Great Depression, and none of them would have been comforted by President Trump setting out to reverse his predecessor’s environmental regulations so coal workers could go back into the mines.

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Virginia F. Mulrooney, Marina del Rey

Trump must accept the reality of climate change before it is too late for the Earth, our only home.

Michael Pravica, Henderson, Nev.

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To the editor: Thank you for your forthright condemnation of Trump’s attempt to roll back the steps his predecessor had taken to put the U.S. in a leadership position in the global effort to combat global warming.

Denying the reality of climate change is merely stupid, but reversing the Clean Power Plan and scrapping regulations aimed at controlling methane emissions are practically criminal. I hope the legal impediments to reversing regulations that you cite in your editorial have the effect of halting many of these giant steps backward.

At the same time, we in California should continue to insist upon our right to establish our own standards and do everything we can to meet the ambitious emission reduction targets that we have set.

Michael Werner, Pasadena

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To the editor: As a physicist, I am very disappointed by Trump’s decision to stick with his party’s line that denies the reality that our Earth is warming due in large part to fossil-fuel burning.

The increasing latent heat in the atmosphere is causing massive oscillations in our weather with increasing strength, just as a spring would react to stretching it with more and more energy. Whenever there are rapid changes in the biosphere of the Earth, all life suffers until it can adapt to the new changes.

The saddest aspect of this tragic story is that we have so many means currently available to reduce fossil fuel consumption drastically; the problem is that our leaders do not have the courage to implement far-reaching changes that would wean Americans off dirty energy.

Many of our leaders appear to be scientifically illiterate and therefor incapable of understanding the precipice that we are approaching. Trump must accept the reality of climate change before it is too late for the Earth, our only home.

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Michael Pravica , Henderson, Nev.

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To the editor: I think we can all breathe easier now that the Trump environmental plan has been unveiled.

Personally, I am choked up by his forethought and intellect.

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Bruce N. Miller, Playa del Rey

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