, a state already in dire straits from the financial meltdown, seems to really have a tough time getting by, especially in former steel mill towns.
Laid-off workers and unemployed citizens have found themselves desperate for a way out:
WaPo: All day long the front door buzzes at Uptown Gems & Jewels. The people come in with their trinkets wrapped in tissue or velvet boxes. They say their hours have been cut or they’ve been laid off. Some have their first names stitched in cursive on their uniforms, others wear safety-toe boots.
“Let me show you something,” says Dallas Root, standing behind the counter with a jeweler’s loupe strung around his neck. He holds up a gallon-size Ziploc bag that’s two-thirds full of gold — engagement rings, class rings, promise rings, serpentine chains, St. Christopher medals, bracelets, anklets and earrings.
“This is just this week,” Root says.