The other day I was given a lesson on the history of Scranton’s relationship with what is referred to as the “Coal Miners Cocktail”. It was the first time I heard the term but I was still interested in what it was all about. I proceeded to hear an earful about the origins of the drink and why it is important to Scrantonians.
Long Hard Day
The story goes that the coal miners would spend hours in the mines mining for coal. They would emerged with lungs full of dust and their throats blackened with filthy air. The remedy for this affliction was to go to the local bar and get a shot accompanied by a glass of beer. This is referred to as the coal miners cocktail. It has been a long time since anyone has mined coal in Scranton but the tradition has continued until this day. I was glad to hear the story but it got me thinking about the way Scrantonians deal with the past. There is this pervasive idea that nothing changes in Scranton and everything remains the same. The truth is that change is inevitable. There is really nothing you can do to stop the march of time (here).
Facing The Reality
Scranton needs come to terms with its coal mining past. The coal miners lived very rough lives and we can all appreciate their efforts, sacrifices and contributions. I am certain that none of the coal miners would have wanted that sort of existence for their descendants. Scrantonains must look to the future and decide what kind of City it wants to be. The current narrative that haunts Scranton is of a former Coal mining town which was wants booming but now has only memories of its glory days. There is no reason why those days should remain in the past. The ability to change is an innate human characteristic. If we could not adapt, we would have never made it until this day. Our very progression as a society is a testament to our ability to change and adapt. Scranton has gone through many changes already. The people will have to embrace the fact that there will continue to be changes in the future. The only people who can determine what Scrantonians face in the future are Scrantonians. The political machine that dwells in the shadows has had its day. Its handy work is visible all over this decaying city, but we can choose a new direction. This city has the ability to be an amazing place and it is pities if we give up control of the fate of this city to the moral bankrupt and ethically destitute. It is our God-given right to pursue happiness. Our liberties protect us from the menacing agitation of those that are treacherous to the ideals of America. As our constitution says, we owe it to our neighbors, friends, and families to ensure that those who are the guardians of our liberties truly guard our liberties. And when they do not, it is our duty to find new protectors of our sacred fortunes. #SaveScranton