The hacker collective Anonymous has issued an eerie video warning vowing that politicians responsible for the toxic drinking water scandal in Flint, Michigan, "will not go unpunished," calling for the state's governor to be charged with manslaughter.
The group blames Michigan Governor Rick Snyder for the tragedy of contaminated water that's burning skin and creating cognitive defects among children who are ingesting the lead in the water.
To save money in 2014, the city started using water from the Flint River, which proved to be toxic. The corrosive water also exposed lead in pipes, which leached into drinking water. Officials had ignored the problem until recently, though emails show Snyder apparently knew about it for more than a year.
Late in 2014, four families filed the first federal class-action lawsuit against Snyder and other government officials. Flint Mayor Karen Weaver has declared a state of emergency in the city, warning that lead poisoning could cause "irreversible" damage to Flint children, 8,600 of whom have been exposed to lead in the water, according to officials.
A federal state of emergency was also declared by President Obama. "What is inexplicable and inexcusable is once people figured out that there was a problem there, and that there was lead in the water, the notion that immediately families weren't notified, things weren't shut down," Obama insisted. "That shouldn't happen anywhere."
"Greetings, citizens of the world," begins the latest Anonymous video that quickly gets to its warning: "We must remind the city officials of Flint that we do not forget and we do not forgive. The crimes committed by Governor Snyder as well as other city officials will not go unpunished.
"It is safe to assume that children may already be doomed to die due to this. It's clear to us that Governor Snyder needs to be reminded that he is a servant for the very same people he has poisoned and made sick. Or perhaps he never forgot. Perhaps corruption is at play here. In that case, he is now going to simply be shown the error of his evil ways. We feel that there currently exists enough evidence to arrest Governor Snyder for either voluntary or involuntary manslaughter.
"We encourage the city of Flint to be vocal and demand that Governor Snyder face criminal charges. Anonymous will stand beside you.
"It all stops now. Every wrong doing will be rectified. Once again justice will arrive in the form of a pale mask. We are Legion."