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Author Topic: "Amish to be evicted over sewage issue"  (Read 2707 times)
Matrinka
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Religion: Irish-Celtic witch
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« Reply #6: May 12, 2009, 09:19:21 am »

"Amish to be evicted over sewage issue"

Ebensburg, USA - Two conservative Amish families will be evicted from their homes Monday after failing to comply with a judge's order.

http://wwrn.org/article.php?idd=30908

The Swartzentruber Amish are extremists.  I've got Amish friends who think that sect is off their nut over some issues.  They're uber-conservative, which is fine, but trying to reconstruct some "golden era", which is what it appears they're trying to do, without knowing that era well enough to do so, because they're not permitted education beyond the 8th grade and "worldly" books aren't permitted, leads to this sort of headache.

No, our ancestors didn't have fancy-schmancy sewage disposal systems, but they DID take steps to keep sewage out of the water supply if at all possible, for everyone's good.  They're not being asked to install flush toilets, just a better holding system so that runoff can't wash the raw waste into the water supply.  A lined hole in the ground, basically.  Adding lime isn't "modern".  My Grandpa did so back at the turn of the 20th century, and he'd learned from his family.  They didn't know then that it actually works to bind bacterial agents, they just knew it made the outhouse smell better.  I use it to treat my dogs' areas for both reasons.  It's ground up limestone, for cryin' in the sink, and you can't get much older than that, can you?  Once the waste has "aged", they can even spread it on their fields.  Human manure, properly composted, is safe and very effective fertilizer. 

I respect their right to live simply.  Hell, I applaud it and do my best to emulate it in my own life.  But you can't put other people at danger for disease over misguided ideals.  In this particular case, they're misguided.  Cements aren't new, lime isn't new, and containing and treating your waste isn't new.  Our ancestors have used/done these things for a rather long time. 

If I could convince the lake to let us use this sort of system, you'd better believe I would, but they're insistent upon septic tanks.  It isn't that they don't think we'd do it well, but there are those who wouldn't, and then the lake would become unusable again.  I am all for keeping our lake clean and healthy to swim in and fish in.

I hate to see them locked out of their homes, but at the same time, this is one of those "no discussion, just do it" situations.  You aren't allowed to urinate or defecate on the side of the street, and you're not allowed to foul the local water supply by leaving human waste where it can run off into the water supply.  End of story.  When you are offered simple solutions that ARE in keeping with your ultra conservative Anabaptist beliefs, and you choose to continue creating a hazardous state, well, you asked for it, you got it.
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