Courthouse News Service
April 6, 2010
The self-ordained Rev. Billy Talen was arrested on Easter Sunday after putting a “holy hex” on JPMorgan Chase bank, which he calls the nation’s largest financier of coal-mining mountaintop removal. The former New York City mayoral candidate and his green-robed chorus put the hex on two bank branches, saying Morgan Chase has helped destroy more than 450 Appalachian mountains, deforested 800 square miles and polluted more than 1,200 miles of streams.
Rev. Billy led his Life After Shopping Gospel Choir to two East Village Chase branches, where the singers “deposited” mounds of “sacred dirt from Coal River Mountain, West Virginia” on the floors of ATM lobbies.
At the branch on St. Marks Place and 2nd Avenue, the choir performed a “mystery channeling of money” as bank customers withdrew money, and the reverend/performance artist preached to a crowd through a white megaphone.
“There’s cancer in the mud in the promised land,” the Rev. Billy intoned.
The journal Science has found mountaintop mining to be correlated with elevated rates of lung cancer.
This article was posted: Tuesday, April 6, 2010 at 1:45 pm