"Pickup trucks customized to spew black smoke into the air are quickly becoming the newest weapon in the culture wars.
"Coal Rollers" are diesel trucks modified with chimneys and equipment that can force extra fuel into the engine causing dark black smoke to pour out of the chimney stacks. These modifications are not new, but as Slate’s Dave Weigel pointed out on Thursday, "rolling coal" has begun to take on a political dimension with pickup drivers increasingly viewing their smokestacks as a form of protest against environmentalists and Obama administration emissions regulations.
"The feeling around here is that everyone who drives a small car is a liberal," a roller named Ryan told Vocativ. "I rolled coal on a Prius once just because they were tailing me."
Weigel spoke to a seller of coal rolling customization equipment who described why some drivers see spewing smoke as a political protest.
"I run into a lot of people that really don’t like Obama at all," the salesperson said. "If he’s into the environment, if he’s into this or that, we’re not. I hear a lot of that. To get a single stack on my truck—that’s my way of giving them the finger. You want clean air and a tiny carbon footprint? Well, screw you."