John D. Sutter reported on Saturday at CNN Online that, “Triple-digit temperatures and sparse rain this summer produced one of the most severe and widespread U.S. droughts in a half-century. Most headlines have focused on the extent of the drought — the fact that it enveloped more than half the country; or that temperatures in July were the hottest for any month on record in the continental United States. Somewhat lost in that national conversation are the stories of [Missouri dairy farmer Mark Argall] and other small-scale farmers who are being pushed out of the only line of work they’ve ever known.
“For them — and for the rural communities that depend on their incomes — the drought is far more than a news item. It’s an earth-shattering event, one they worry could lead the dairy communities of southern Missouri to unravel.
“And, perhaps saddest of all, farmers say the sell-offs could have been avoided.”