I am a strong advocate for public lands, having thrived in them during my summers throughout my childhood. In turn, I offered this same healthy privilege to my children. The natural beauty of public lands has helped form the very fiber of my being, having not only shaped me from the inside, but provided me my first hinted glimpses of God.
The national monuments in Utah are slated to be illegally diminished under an edict from Trump for the purpose of oil, gas, and industry exploitation. This is unacceptable. We cannot allow these inspiring, sacred lands to be raped and pillaged, only to be left desolate of their greater worth to humankind.
Bear’s Ear’s National Monument is to be reduced by 85% and Escalante-Grand Staircase National Monument will be reduced by 50%. This is being legally challenged by Patagonia who is suing Trump (see here).
There are things you can do to help. The suit is taking public comment until November 30, and needs all of us to weigh in to protect this public land. See this link for ways to help. Also read this impact statement if you want lots of specific content for your comments. (Not as current a resource, this also itemizes ways to help.)
And I highly recommend this very well written, engaging human interest article in the New Yorker magazine that features two foodies, restaurant owners in the area, who are also deeply involved in trying to save this land; read about the fight of Hell’s Backbone Grill, and it will give you a flavor of the imperative to fight this impending loss. I love the image in that article that it is so dark there at night that you can see the headlamp of a lone hiker 15 miles away.
We are talking about the bliss of truly untouched wilderness here. This description is no longer applicable to our national parks, which are so well trafficked. Our national monuments are the places to go to commune with the land, and are important for that, as well as their unique geological formations and treasured petroglyphs. All this needs to be preserved for generations to come.
The photos in this post are not my photographs; I took them from social media, and each one was labeled that they are of land that will no longer be protected unless this action is stopped. One wonders if the lawmakers have been to these places and felt the profound effect they have on the human heart, a value far beyond, more rare, and vastly more enduring than any short term gains of capitalism.
Please add your voice to mine and many others on this important issue.