"In an effort to encourage graduates to consider jobs in rural areas that are in desperate need of lawyers, the University of North Dakota School of Law has created a one-year pilot program to give students an idea of what it's like to live and work in a rural area, Ashley Marquis reports for Dakota Student, the college's student-run newspaper. If continued, ‘The program would offer three internships for law students to go to smaller communities in the state that have less than 15,000 people. The interns would work closely with a judge throughout the summer and into the school year."
" Standing in front of his congregation at a small Pentecostal church in Kentucky, Pastor Jamie Coots held the long, sleek body of a poisonous snake, practicing what he considers a holy Christian sacrament, but what others are calling a threat to public safety. In tiny churches tucked away in rural Appalachia, "snake handling," which began generations ago as an expression of faith, is turning into a fight over religious freedom. "
" More than 300,000 people died from drug poisoning in the U.S. between 1999 and 2009. That first year, opioid analgesics—drugs like methadone, oxycodone, and hydrocodone—were responsible for 21 percent of drug poisoning deaths. By 2009, that number had increased to 42 percent, or 15,597 dead, making prescription painkillers the leading cause of drug-poisoning deaths. We've known for some time which types of U.S. communities have been hit the hardest by this country's prescription pill crisis (rural ones) and which states have the biggest problems (those on the Gulf Coast, in Appalachia, and the southwest). But a new series of maps published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine shows that the problem has spread, and now reaches virtually every part of the country."
"If you think this president makes unprecedented claims about what government can do for people, you’re forgetting Lyndon Johnson. Fifty years ago today, LBJ was sworn in as president after an assassin’s bullet took the life of John Kennedy. Within five months, the new president had launched a well-publicized presidential tour of Appalachia. On the way he stopped by the home of unemployed coal miner Tommy Fletcher in the hills of East Kentucky — transforming the Fletcher front porch into an iconic image of the War on Poverty."
"Apart from government aid, many private charities send money, volunteers, free medical care and truckloads of donated food and clothes to Martin County each year.Their names blur together: the Appalachia Service Project, Appalachia Reach Out, the Christian Appalachian Project and the Rockin' Appalachian Moms Project, to name but a few....Writing in 1967, Kentucky journalist John Fetterman observed: 'Appalachia is Mecca for those driven — both by demons and by self-guilt — to do unto somebody, somehow. So for decades, Appalachia has been done unto.'
"The president of the United States dropped from the sky in 1964 to shake the hand of unemployed coal miner Tommy Fletcher and declare war on poverty. A half-century later, viewed from where it began, the war has produced a depressing stalemate. President Lyndon B. Johnson toured Martin County as he prepared to ask Congress for a $1 billion aid package for Appalachia, a place thrust into an unflattering spotlight by Harry Caudill's book Night Comes to the Cumberlands: A Biography of a Depressed Area. Johnson flew in by helicopter and led the White House press corps through the area's rugged countryside so everyone could see how badly the Appalachian people lived."