Bears Ears a go — but here’s where Obama drew the line

The designation’s concessions are unlikely to appease ardent opponents.

 

President Barack Obama on Wednesday designated the Bears Ears National Monument in southeastern Utah, culminating an eight-decade-long effort to increase protections on the ecologically diverse, archaeologically rich, canyon-cut landscape that is the ancestral homeland of several southwestern tribes. The decision is being heralded as not only a victory for the conservation community, but also for tribal sovereignty.

The most recent push to protect the region’s environmental and cultural resources was spearheaded by an intertribal coalition made up of descendants of people who have inhabited the area at different times over the last 3,000 years. They were backed by environmentalists, archaeologists and members of the outdoor recreation community. Yet their effort also encountered bitter opposition from many locals, including some Navajos, Utes and Mormon descendants of the first white people to settle this corner of Utah, now one of the hot spots of the Sagebrush Rebellion.

The proclamation, written in descriptive and even flowery language, creates a monument on 1.35 million acres of public land currently managed by the Bureau of Land Management and the US Forest Service. Those agencies will jointly oversee the new monument, with “guidance and recommendations” from a commission made up of elected officers from each of the coalition’s five tribes: Hopi Nation, Zuni Tribe, Navajo Nation, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and the Ute Indian Tribe of the Uintah Ouray. The agencies shall “carefully and fully consider integrating the traditional and historical knowledge” of the commission into management decisions. This gives tribes an unprecedented amount of say over their ancestral lands that lie in the public domain yet outside the boundaries of their reservations.

A cliff dwelling within the new national monument.
Jonathan Thompson

In his 1943 book, One Man’s West, author David Lavender describes what is now Bears Ears National Monument as “a million and a quarter acres of staggering desolation between the San Juan and Colorado rivers, a vast triangle of land that even today is not completely mapped.” Several years earlier, the area had been included in a proposed, but failed, 4-million-acre Escalante National Monument. In the years since, as conservationists have tried various tactics to protect it — most significantly with the Red Rock Wilderness Act — the same landscape has not only been mapped, but also spiderwebbed with roads and ATV trails. YouTubers, Facebookers and geo-taggers have exposed once-secret places to the masses. Archaeological sites have been looted by pothunters or spiteful vandals or scraped clean of artifacts by oblivious souvenir collectors, while cryptobiotic crusts have been trampled and tracked by wayward hikers and off-road-vehicle riders.

Monument proponents hope that the designation will bring more resources to the area in order to more effectively enforce existing laws, shore up regulations and to educate the public about the importance of the cultural resources. It will also give Pueblo people the opportunity to tell the story of their ancestors, who inhabited the Bears Ears landscape for more than 1,000 years.

Critics of the monument designation have portrayed it as a “land grab” on par with then-President Bill Clinton’s 1996 creation of the 1.8 million-acre Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument to the west of here. The comparison doesn’t hold up, however. Grand Staircase-Escalante was devised so secretly, and hoisted on the public so unexpectedly, that even conservationists were miffed. The Bears Ears process, on the other hand, was initiated transparently by local Navajo community leaders years ago. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell spent days in the region listening to concerns and exploring the sites that were included in the coalition’s proposal. And the Obama administration waited until an alternate proposal, the Public Lands Initiative, failed in Congress before making the designation.

The details of the designation suggest that the administration took the opposition’s concerns to heart, and were guided in part by the Public Lands Initiative. The designated monument is smaller by 600,000 acres than the coalition’s proposal. In fact, its boundaries more closely follow those proposed in the PLI, which would have put 1.4 million acres within two National Conservation Areas and a separate wilderness area.

These areas were included in the inter-tribal coalition's proposal, but were left out of the final monument designation:

• The Abajo Mountains, a.k.a. Blue Mountains, which rise up just west of Monticello, the county seat, fall outside the monument boundaries. Locals use the mountains for grazing cattle, gathering firewood, recreation and as their primary source of municipal water.

• The lower reach of Allen Canyon, west of Blanding, which contains Ute Mountain Ute land and grazing allotments, is not part of the monument. (The archaeologically significant upper reaches of the canyon are within the monument).

• Black Mesa, which rises up between Cottonwood Wash and Butler Wash, was cut out of the monument (exactly as it was cut out of the National Conservation Areas in the PLI).

• A large, arcing strip of land adjacent to Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and surrounding Mancos Mesa was cut out of the proposal. Wingate Mesa, Nokai Dome and the Daneros uranium mine, which is looking to expand, will not be included within the national monument, giving Daneros operators plenty of elbow-room to enlarge the mine. (Mancos Mesa is included in the new monument). 

• Raplee Anticline and most of Lime Ridge between Mexican Hat and Comb Ridge are excluded from the monument. This has been the site of some oil development and limestone quarrying.

These significant concessions to the opposition, along with language in the proclamation requiring monument managers to preserve access to Native Americans for traditional uses such as gathering firewood, herbs and piñon nuts, may soothe some of the local tension regarding the monument. The hardcore ideologues, however, are not appeased. The Utah Commission for the Stewardship of Public Lands issued a statement comparing the designation to “the unilateral tyranny exercised by the King of England against the American colonies two and a half centuries ago,” and pledged to do what it can to “overturn this act of political cronyism.” They will be joined by Utah’s congressional delegation and perhaps the administration of President-elect Donald Trump, who has pledged to overturn all of Obama’s executive orders.

That won't be easy — a president has never reversed a national monument. Besides, local opposition often dies down once monument status starts to draw more tourism dollars, and once it becomes apparent that a monument will not, in fact, lock up the land or kill the local economy. With the exception of the Aneth oil field and the Daneros uranium mine — neither of which are in the monument — the extraction industries in San Juan County were long ago wiped out by market forces. The only existing economy threatened by the Bears Ears National Monument is the pilfering and selling of antiquities.

“Mormon history, the Constitution and laws, and white man's history are written on paper,” said Octavius Seowtewa, of Zuni, in reaction to the designation. “Our history—the Native history—is written in stone on canyon walls. We celebrate knowing our history at Bears Ears will be protected for future generations, forever.”

This article has been updated to clarify the boundaries of the Public Lands Initiative, which includes not only National Conservation areas, but also a wilderness area.

Jonathan Thompson is a contributing editor at High Country News. He is currently writing a book about the Gold King Mine spill. 

Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 10:59 AM
Thanks, Jonny! Nice quick knockout, especially on the land and other concessions. The middle three, on the land, I'm largely OK with. The first, especially, and the last, I wish wouldn't have been conceded. Wood-gathering and similar provisions might have been kept in, while still incorporating the Abajos.

The wood-gathering for Indians inside monument boundaries, no real problems.

Now, how much input will the tribal groups actually have as "management consultants"? That is part of where the rubber will hit the road, too.
Stephen Krieg
Stephen Krieg Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 11:21 AM
There is an anti-Monument protest going on at the San Juan County Courthouse in Monticello this morning. So I have renewed my subscription to HCN and added a small donation.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 11:26 AM
I have sent the URL to Twitter and Facebook
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 11:31 AM
Also per my namesake, reminder, if you make a donation, like many nonprofits at year's end, there's a match: https://www.hcn.org/support[…]=RF1612&utm_medum=email
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 03:10 PM
Worth remembering that the late Cal Black; then a county commissioner in San Juan County; got busted for pot hunting sometime back in the 1980s or early '90s. SJ County Commissioner Phil Lyman's little jaunt into Recapture Canyon a couple years ago, with some of the extended Bundy clan, continued that county "tradition."
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 29, 2016 03:30 PM
Steve B: That was, of course, before NAGPRA, the Cal Black incident. Jonny, a related question — does the "management consulting" offer any chance that the various tribal police might be able to flash their badges inside the monument?
Jonathan Thompson
Jonathan Thompson Subscriber
Dec 30, 2016 02:51 AM
Steve B. and Steve S.: Cal Black's house was raided during the notorious 1986 Blanding raid, but they weren't after Cal, himself, but his son (whose name I can't remember). And NAGPRA's not the applicable law. It's ARPA, the Archaeological Resource Protection Act, which was passed in 1979. It basically bolsters the Antiquities Act and gave it more teeth, allowing for the 1986 raid. And Steve S., I don't think tribal cops are going to be flashing badges in the monument! But that's the kind of detail that will come out as the management plan is put together by BLM and USFS with input from the tribal commission. The language of the proclamation gives the tribal commission quite a bit of power.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 30, 2016 07:23 AM
Thanks! I'm sure you'll have more details as the management plan gets fleshed out in the real world. Thanks otherwise; I knew that NAGPRA referred to cultural artifacts, but was still mainly about repatriation from government sites, and couldn't remember what else was out there.

One final question, which will probably come out in more detail later: How much cooperation between BLM and USFS will be needed and how much have they already done in this area?
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Dec 30, 2016 11:42 AM
Thanks Jonathan!....You answered most of my initial questions on the designation.....Great proclamation from Obama...I just hope we can keep it!! I think that the active support of the Tribal Coalition is going to be crucial to this....we will see just how great a supporter of the First Nations Sec. Zinke really will be?
What "Unilateral Tyranny" did George III actually exercise against the American Colonies?....I have never been able to substantiate this canard against "the King in Parliament"!....It is more American bunkum and mythology!!..In fact, the King was a consistent defender of the First Nations prerogatives as sovereign nations equal to the British Empire...it was this that really got the colonists in an uproar....over free access to the West!
Bill Keshlear
Bill Keshlear
Dec 30, 2016 11:43 AM
The dozen or so people – ranchers, ATV riders, miners, hunters and archeology buffs collectively known as the San Juan County Lands Council – who spent hundreds of hours over several years poring over maps, researching, arguing and finally coming to a consensus on the PLI that looks a whole lot like Obama’s Bears Ears National Monument have been rendered invisible and voiceless by Utah, regional and national media.

So, let’s give credit where it’s due. These people were asked to participate in a process intended to resolve long-standing disputes over publicly owned lands they held dear, even sacred. They did what nobody had done in 80 years of attempts.

They put together three compromise proposals culled from an enormous amount of comment and their own knowledge of the community and the land and its historical uses. One member of the group could tell stories that go back 50 years. The results didn’t please everyone. Each called for wilderness areas, National Conservation Areas and an energy development zone. At the end of 2014, the Lands Council held a series of open houses across the county. Anybody could attend and ask questions.

Six months later, the group’s proposal was unveiled. In a comment on the county’s website, a representative of the only conservation group to attend all Lands Council meetings, Josh Ewing of Friends of Cedar Mesa, wrote it was “a strong show of support by the local community for protecting lands and archeology in our county”

At ground level, it was a good-faith exercise in representative democracy that worked; at altitude, not so much. Efforts of the group were marginalized by half-truths on one end of the political spectrum and sand-bagged on the other by revisions mysteriously inserted into legislation introduced into Congress by Rep. Rob Bishop.

That’s too bad. The work of the Lands Council should be applauded.

My heartfelt thanks goes to the following members of the council (as listed on San Juan County’s website) for their service to Utah and the country: Phil Lyman, chair; Tim Chamberlain, Blanding; Steve Deeter, La Sal; Josh Ewing, Bluff; Vaughn Hadenfeldt, Bluff; Marie Holiday, Monument Valley; Shaye Holiday, Monument Valley; Brent Johansen, Blanding; Mark Maryboy, Montezuma Creek; Grayson Redd, Monticello; Heidi Redd, Dugout Ranch, Indian Creek; Shane Shumway, Blanding; Stefnee Turk, Blanding; and Todd Westcott, Monticello.
Bill Keshlear
Bill Keshlear
Dec 30, 2016 11:47 AM
A minor quibble, but ... "Protection is provided via two National Conservation Areas and a large-scale wilderness area,” according to a summary of late changes to Bishop’s PLI bill. Not just NCAs, as the Jonathan Thompson report says.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Dec 30, 2016 12:38 PM
Bill, and, because of Bishop's sandbagging, Ewing called >>for Obama to do just what he did<<

Friday, December 9, 2016

“Congress has concluded its work for the 2016 session without so much as a vote in the House of Representatives on the Utah Public Lands Initiative. We believe this represents a clear sign the bill lacked the bi-partisan support necessary to become law due to the many ‘poison pills’ it contained that would have decreased protections on the ground for internationally significant lands.

“Congress has failed for 113 years to protect the Bears Ears region, an area of enormous cultural, scientific and scenic value – a landscape containing more archaeological sites than Utah’s ‘Mighty Five’ National Parks combined. This failure to act comes despite almost unanimous local support for protecting archaeologically rich areas such as Cedar Mesa. Virtually every Utah elected official expressed support for the PLI’s provisions for designating large acreages of land in San Juan County as National Conservation Areas and Wilderness.

“We hope President Obama will finish the job Congress could not by designating a Bears Ears National Monument before he leaves office. Such action would represent the quintessential use of the Antiquities Act to protect true antiquities when the legislative process has failed. While we always preferred a legislative solution, this executive action is precisely what Congress envisioned when it delegated to the President the authority to create National Monuments.

With skyrocketing visitation without management resources, continuing looting and vandalism, and the bulls eye of out-of-state energy developers, we don’t have 113 more years to wait for Congress to get the job done.”

 

— Josh Ewing, Executive Director

http://www.friendsofcedarmesa.org/[…]/
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Dec 30, 2016 03:58 PM
One huge problem that most of us had with the PLI involved the nature of the "devil in the details"! ...and this probably had a lot to do with why it did not go anywhere in Congress! Like the entire Utah delegation, Bob Bishop's fast and loose practices with important definitions (like conservation areas and "wilderness") ....when you could get them...bore no congruence with those of the public at large! .....it was, in fact, a "Plundered Lands Initiative"...and everybody new it....including the framers!!
Bill Keshlear
Bill Keshlear
Dec 30, 2016 08:49 PM
Yes.
Paige Blankenbuehler
Paige Blankenbuehler Subscriber
Dec 31, 2016 10:06 AM
Bill Keshlear,

Thank you for your comment. We've updated the article to clarify that the boundaries include not only National Conservation areas, but also a wilderness area. We appreciate your attention and for pointing out the error.

Happy holidays,

Paige Blankenbuehler
Assistant Editor
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Dec 31, 2016 10:56 AM
I remain circumspect in celebrating very good NM designations ...well within the spirit and law of the Antiquities Act...despite blather to the contrary. The Bundy Bunch "Patriots" are getting themselves worked up with lots of rhetoric over Gold Butte....and the Utah delegation is having meltdown (as per usual!) over Bears Ears!...
and , yes, I have been to Gold Butte and have supported Senator Reid's ongoing efforts overcome Bob Bishop's roadblocks and get this small but beautiful area protected!
My reticence concerns the future of these and other reserved areas which will be under the management...or lack of same....of a hostile and crazed Congress and Administration! While it does appear that a president does not have the authority to reverse an Antiquities Act designation....it may well be under the prerogative of Congress to do so...Yeesh!! ...And it is definitely within the power of the Administration and its Congress to egregiously defund and mismanage Public Lands, and any part thereof as he/it wishes!. In the end...the dirty little secret is that Congress and the President can do whatever he and/or they want!!....

James Campbell
James Campbell Subscriber
Jan 03, 2017 03:03 PM
No one has mentioned the fact that the designation includes land on which Cliven Bundy et al holds/did hold a grazing permit which has caused quite a dust up. His son Aamon who was recently found not guilty of conspiracy charges related tot he armed occupation of the Malhuer National Wildlife refuge near Burns, Oregon is not happy with the designation. Some are saying the designation is retrobution against the Bundy family. Here is what Aamon has to say. https://mainerepublicemailalert.com/[…]/
Robert Luce
Robert Luce Subscriber
Jan 03, 2017 04:37 PM
Almost every national park and national monument of significant size, all the way from Yellowstone NP in 1872 to Grand Staircase-Escalante NM in 1996 has had some degree of local opposition. But as stated in Mr Thompson's article, that seems to melt away when visitor dollars start coming in. The former "opposition" soon become significant defenders of their new cash cow. At this point in the history of our country, we need to conserve as much public land as we can, however we can. As has been stated many times in HCN, public land does not belong to the "locals", it belongs to all Americans. Locals do not necessarily know how to "best "manage public land just because they have had free run on it for a century. In this century the public is waking up to the public land management issues.
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 03, 2017 05:12 PM
Robert. I get that federal lands belongs to the entire us, but what about back east where there is almost no federal land. The states there get to control pretty much all activity in their boundaries. Why don't the people who actually live here get a greater say in what happens here then someone a thousand miles away? What is to stop the federal government from turning most of Utah into a national monument(s)?
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 03, 2017 05:32 PM
James: my quick check of Google just now found considerable amounts of federal land east of the Mississippi River and just west. National Forest land is present in the Ozark and Appalachian Mountain ranges; the upper Midwest, including northern Minnesota, Wisconsin, upper and lower Michigan. There are separate National Forest lands in southern Illinois and southern Indiana, as well as elsewhere. Considerable amounts of eastern forests are state owned (the Adirondacks in NY); or privately owned (northern Maine). There also are various National Parks (Hot Springs, Everglades, Great Smoky Mountains, Shenandoah, etc.) as well as National Lakeshores; Indiana Dunes as an example; and National Seashore). And more.

People here in the West have good opportunities to weigh in with opinions on management of federal lands, thanks to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) signed into law in 1969 by Republican President Richard Nixon. Every national forest and every BLM resource area has a management plan in place. NEPA allows for public participation in most NEPA decisions. Yes, someone in Georgia has the right to comment on plan changes in Colorado, for example. But you also have an equal right to comment on proposed plan amendments in the Shawnee National Forest (Illinois) if you so desire.

Bill Keshlear
Bill Keshlear
Jan 03, 2017 05:39 PM
James Campbell, Cliven Bundy's ranch is several hundred miles west, on the other side of the Colorado River.

James Skinner, the Bears Ears Monument that President Obama designated is similar to the proposal hammered out over a period of about 15 months by citizens of San Juan County – the Lands Council – and presented at a series of open houses throughout the county. If Rep. Rob Bishop had chosen to introduce that version of his Public Lands Initiative, it likely could've become law. He chose a cynical political game of obstruction that sandbagged the good-faith efforts of members of the council.

David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 03, 2017 06:26 PM
Au contrare, James Campbell...my 12/31 post...just prior to your 1/3 post.... discusses Gold Butte and the Bundy Bunch's going hysterical over the designations (so far, at least, the Bundys themselves appear to have said nothing!) and are calling for action over this "land grab" of our Public Land!!....I just assumed that everyone here already knew the significance of that designation! I consider it as a parting gift to Senator Reid who has advocated for its designation for many years....although it has been getting beat up pretty good over the years, being close to Mesquite, it is still a beautiful spot and very much deserves protection!.....Probably won't get it, though, on the ground!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 03, 2017 06:50 PM
steve;
Look at a map of federal land for the us. There is no where near a balance between east and west.
Also why are you including state ownership in your list above? State land is obviously managed by the state.

The highest percentage of federal land in the east I could see is new Hampshire at 13.5%. Utah is 66.5 percent.
The largest total acres I believe is in florida at 5.5 million acres. Utah has 35 million acres of federal land. Again, why should someone from new York which is .7 percent federal ownership have any say about land in Utah?

Here is where I got the data. Hopefully it is correct.

http://www.deseretnews.com/[…]the-federal-government.html
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 03, 2017 06:59 PM
Bill;
That bill has nothing to do with what I am saying. We should have more local control. Period. How about letting the political process play out. How about the federal government letting go of all the land in the west it is just sitting on it.
Janet Wilcox
Janet Wilcox
Jan 03, 2017 09:20 PM
This says it all for me. The disparity and discrimination between Public land states and Private land states. https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.clou[…]Lands_poster.png?1473289903
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 03, 2017 09:57 PM
As seems to be getting to be a bit of a norm in the last couple of years, a thoughtful, in-depth piece by HCN on a tough subject starts drawing in non-subscribers of a certain political ilk to comment, or whatever.
Stephen Krieg
Stephen Krieg Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 07:56 AM
Steve Snyder you are correct. The right-wingers delight in spending their days trolling any sites they don't agree with. If you take their bait you merely increase their pleasure.
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 09:19 AM
James Skinner: it was not my purpose to exactly explain to you the exact percentages of federal land east and west of the Mississippi. "We should have more local control, period." I live here in the West, lead and serve on volunteer trail crews working with the federal land management agencies, and I say no to your statement.

"How about the federal government letting go of all the land in the West......." As a lifelong traditional conservative Republican, I again say "no." The Republican Party has a strong conservationist history regarding the public lands in the West. It began with Abraham Lincoln; continuing with Presidents Grant, T. Roosevelt, Coolidge, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan, and even George W. Bush. Guys like Rob Bishop (R-UT) are a dime a dozen and not worthy to be mentioned in the same breath as these great Republican conservationist presidents.
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 09:22 AM
Janet Wilcox: what you don't say about your link is that the American Lands Council is a creation of state representative Ken Ivory from Utah and specifically created to mount the biggest land grab in American history; stealing our Western public lands in order to sell them off to the highest bidders.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 10:50 AM
These apparent discrepancies all have to do with when and how Federal and State Lands were originally acquired.
...As well as why most of the Federal Public Lands are in the West. I could elaborate...but no one ever seems to pay any attention....much less have any real interest in the actual facts and history behind all of this stuff!!....So I will not waste my time on it....but it really is totally explicable in a course of empire sort of way!
Janet Wilcox
Janet Wilcox
Jan 04, 2017 10:52 AM
Steve, Does it matter who created it, if it accurately illustrates the disparity between East and West States? What if land swaps were done? How would you view that? Public land in the west, for Private land in other states. A win-win situation. I don't disagree with public use of lands, but with the disparity and inequality created for citizens who live public land poor states as they try to make a living, educate their children, and provide services. Colorado has twice as much private land as Utah, so "subscribers" of HCN may not see this as a big deal.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 01:17 PM
Colorado has more land that could be used for grazing, even farming. You can't pump water up half a mile out of a Colorado River canyon, ignoring whether the ground at the surface is good agricultural land.

Maybe all the Utahans who don't like that, especially if they're Mormon, could move to New York State of Joseph Smith birth or Vermont of Brigham Young birth?
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 04, 2017 02:05 PM
Steve B
So you are fine with east coast states being allowed to control their own territory while west coast states cant?
This makes no sense. Why don't you want western states to control their own land? How can states be truly independent states when the feds can dictate rules over 2/3's of the land. The federal government doesn't exactly have a stellar record of managing these lands as it is.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 02:21 PM
James, never said that. You might want to read up on the history of the old General Land Office and various land acts, surveys, etc. Also, per suggested books for reading in November, "Beyond the 100th Meridian" was recommended. For an even better book about Powell and his well thought ideas on the West, try "A River Running West."

I'll even help you out with the GLO. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Land_Office

(Knowing the Northwest Ordinance would be good, too.)
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 04, 2017 02:27 PM
Steve S;
I never responded to you and have no idea what you are even talking about.
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 04:01 PM
James Skinner: I never said anything about "being fine" with how eastern states control their lands. I think it would be helpful for you to review Steve Snyder's suggested readings. You may also want to look up and review the enabling acts from which each Western state gained statehood. I know in Colorado's act, and several other state acts, the states forever renounced any claim on residual federal lands after states received their bounty of granted federal lands. Colorado still has over 2.8 million acres of its land granted at statehood. In contrast, Nevada has about 3,000 acres left, which may be a good indicator of what might happen (quick sell off) if the federal land is transferred to the states. As for who has a "stellar record" of managing lands and who doesn't, that's a matter of opinion and discussion.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 04, 2017 06:54 PM
Like I said.....There are explanations for all of these speculations but it means delving in to history and fact...and who wants to go there...certainly not Utahns!
Jim Bolen
Jim Bolen
Jan 04, 2017 10:34 PM
I would like to see a new map of the proposed monument to see what is left out .
A couple of questions?
 Is the west side of the Abajos starting at Bridges going north which includes the upper reaches of white and dark canyon included and also beef basin to the canyonlands boundary.?
If this follows Bishop's PLI boundary how is this different then his proposal ? and what objections will Bishop and his group bring up?
I think the uniqueness of having the five native American tribes having a large say will hopefully put a stop to trying to reverse the monument status. Most Americans rightfully feel guilty about how we robbed Native Americans of their lands and would make it politically difficult for the Republicans to take this land but will see with the Nation currently under control of the White Nationalist party.
Again we are having the argument about western lands versus eastern lands . I left the east 42 years ago because of the open lands of the west. For the ones who want to change our land ownership to look like the east I suggest they just move east. And if you think that the economics of Iowa farmland is the same as Redrock country of Utah , I don't really think you know the land very well.
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 04, 2017 11:02 PM
jim;
No one is saying we want tons more people here. We want local control just like the eastern states have. Personally I don't have a problem with having even more parks, but I think it should be the state that develops them. If they manage them badly at least they can be voted out of office.
Jonathan Thompson
Jonathan Thompson Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 02:50 AM
Jim: There's a highlighted link in the above story to the final designation map. Yes, the new monument includes all of Dark Canyon, White Canyon and Arch Canyon and points north.
Jonathan Thompson
Jonathan Thompson Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 05:26 AM
Jim: As to your second question: Bishop's PLI proposal's boundaries are very similar to the final monument boundaries (with some exceptions). The PLI would have protected the land under two National Conservation Areas (Bears Ears and Indian Creek) and one wilderness area (Mancos Mesa). An NCA doesn't inherently provide less protection than a monument, although the management structure would have differed, so who knows what might have come out in the wash. The big difference between the PLI and the Bears Ears monument are provisions in the PLI that applied to places outside of the proposed NCAs or wilderness areas dealing with energy permitting, motorized routes in Recapture Canyon, and the like. By drawing the boundaries as it did, the Obama administration has made it very difficult for Bishop et al to come up with legitimate objections.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 08:37 AM
Steve B: Texas is another example of what happens when you sell off most your state-owned lands.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 10:35 AM
All the bitching and moaning about ownership Public Lands....such as we hear now....did not begin until early in the 20th century when the Federal Government realized that the land it was supposed to be managing was being pillaged and trashed into oblivion by local and Eastern Plutocratic interests all of which had had free reign for decades. As soon as the Feds began to reign in all the extractive interests through the creation of management bodies and the implementation rules and regs, the howls of outrage began as a whole lot of oxen began to get gored!!
My surmise is that, as we return to the lack of oversight and regulation promised by the WNP/GOP and the Trumpist Administration of Billion Dollar Babies...(which is how the West was run in the Gilded Age... id est...open for business!).. .most of the present hysteria and pearl clutching over Public Lands ownership will dissipate. The truth of the matter is that the Big Money/ Plutocratic interests (who are the "deciders"!).. would much rather deal with one central clearing house ...so long as they can get what they want....rather than a whole slew of state and local entities. The state and local interests, who see a nice windfall in ripping off the populace, are going to be left with the crumbs left by the Plutocrats as they rake off the profits for themselves...as always!!
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 10:50 AM
James Skinner wrote: "we want local control just like the eastern states have....." I wonder who "we" is. I can assume the American Lands Council, most of the Utah congressional delegation, the Bundy clan in Nevada, etc.

Some clarification: I don't believe that Indiana controls the Hoosier National Forest; or that Kentucky controls Mammoth Cave National Park; or that Tennessee & North Carolina control Great Smoky Mountains National Park; and so on. No system is perfect. But I would rather have; by far; the federal land management agencies, with their duties as outlined by NEPA and various organic Acts of Congress; managing the public's lands instead of individual states with all their political back room dealings.

Steve Snyder gave a reference to the General Land Office. James: it might be a good idea also for you to research the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 and what led to that Act.
Jim Bolen
Jim Bolen
Jan 05, 2017 11:04 AM
yes David the feds are our savior or our destroyer it all depends who is running the show. Obviously 48% of the country failed to see beyond The WNP/GOP job killing rhetoric as a smokescreen for huge ripoff by the plutocrats of this country. Irregardless we were would be worse off if we had state and county control where outcomes would become irreversible. The staggering economic power of corporate interestswould simply overwhelm the local populations through phony dreams of prosperity, threats, bribes and local Tom's. For the large corporate interests, they could pick off a county one at a time just like the white settlers picked off the American bison while the rest of the herd just stood there and watched
Our only hope is that the of the American public will finally come to their senses and realize that the GOP/WNP is working against their interests of the 99%.
   
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 12:54 PM
Um, as a life-long registered Republican, I'm not a white nationalist and never have been. Just because some of the "alt-right" groups endorsed Trump does not make the entire party a WNP.

Back on the main topic, with local control of public lands also comes local responsibility. As in, a state that takes over public lands within its borders becomes responsible for fighting wildfires and dealing with acid water drainage from abandoned mines, among other things. Even with sell-off of the best places, a state still would be looking at massive tax increases for its citizens. The cost of recreational use and cost for grazing permits would escalate dramatically.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 05:07 PM
This from Bernard DeVoto/ Harper's Magazine, January 1947 (Yes, folks, 70 years ago!!)

                 "The West Against Itself"
The plan is to get rid of Public Lands altogether ,turning them over to the states, which can be coerced as the Federal government cannot be, and eventually to private ownership.....This is your land that we are talking about!.

Does that passage ring any bells!!...it should.
Just as the Plutocrats of the Gilded Age simply walked away from the Public Lands that they had plundered once they had pocketed the profits....we will see the same process played out once again if and when all these locals being shilled by the power brokers get their fondest wish and rural communities, once again, become "company towns" for the Plutocrats and their extractive industries ( lumber, coal, oil, mineral mines of various ilks, and large ranching companies)....only to be blasted again when the industry taps out the big money goes elsewhere to the next boomtown (boom and bust , the siren song of the West!)...the money will go East...and overseas!...and the woe will stay out West!
At which point....the raped and abandoned private land....along with the pillaged lands that were exploited by the state's themselves...will all be abandoned and will revert by default back to the Feds....thus the Public Lands that will be stolen from the populace will be returned to the populace to be restored and repaired as is possible....even in the denouement of the Gilded Age, states routinely gave land back to the Feds because it had become useless to they didn't want to deal with it!
Anybody thinks that human nature has changed radically in the last 70 years....I have news for you...it has not!
The only difference that I can see nowadays is that the states are just dieing to pull this off...and it won't take much coercing for them to get ripped off by the Corporatists....foreign or domestic!!


David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 05:38 PM
The Neo-Fascist groups to which you refer, Steve, bear the same relationship to the doctrine and world view of the White Nationalist Party that the H. L. Mencken Club does to the actual H. L. Mencken! !
I have described the history of the WNP , its antecedents in the European age of exploration and empire, its policies toward Women, Native Americans, Blacks and immigrants (other than fellow Europeans) at length elsewhere! ...The fact that it is now fully embodied in the fully reformed and purged GOP is, really, unavoidably obvious to any objective observer....right down to its penchant for hypocrisy and its smokescreen of piety!...No reason to be defensive....it embodies a proud tradition going back 400 years on the North American continent!!....and ...it can be felt by everyone who is not a member of "the club" at its every turning of the screw!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 05, 2017 05:57 PM
David;
What states in the east are giving their land back to the feds? You tell a nice story, but it has no facts in it.
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 05, 2017 06:13 PM
James, that's a nice twisting of what David said, speaking of no facts. He said nothing like that. You apparently, in my opinion, either need to work on reading comprehension, or if you refuse, then need to refrain from improper interpretations.
Jim Bolen
Jim Bolen
Jan 05, 2017 09:49 PM
I think if we had more republicans like Steve B, I would have some hope for our country but the moderate republicans are being pushed aside by the extreme ideologists who's idol is Ayn Rand. It is not just Trump, it's the whole party and their convention platform they ratified which included transferring lands back to the states
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 06, 2017 04:20 PM
Steve S;
What facts did he sight? Prove me wrong, don't just tell me I am. If he actually does have facts I would like to see them.
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 06, 2017 04:22 PM
Jim B;
Many republicans do want public lands transferred, but I don't remember Trump ever pushing that. Do you have a quote or website with that info?
Jim Bolen
Jim Bolen
Jan 06, 2017 05:02 PM
James
My comment was more on the official stand of the republican party then on Trump. Their platform has language in that advocates for state transfers. so my comment was more on the anti fed lands views of the GOP/WNP. Initially Trump was in favor of keeping lands under federal jurisdiction, however he has now waffled as well as the view of his new secretary of interior Rep Zinke who just voted on a pro state giveaway if lands were ever transferred. Looking at Zinke and EPA appointee Pruit does not give one much hope as these are big gas and oil guys with the state advocates Koch brothers in the background trying to wrest control away from the Feds.
James I think the handwriting is on the wall for both Trump and the GOP.
But I could be wrong on Trump but sadly I don't think so
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 06, 2017 06:42 PM
The transfer of Public Lands to the states is in the Republican Party Platform that was approved at its convention!...and is hugely supported , as always, by the Chamber of Commerce and, of course, by ALEC!! Trump jr. ( an , obviously, influential friend of Zinke and instrumental in his Interior nomination!)...has indicated that he does not support the liquidation of Public Lands , as it might disadvantage hunters,...favouring deregulation and a much more aggressively business friendly land management policy.... ala the Gilded Age! Trump Jr. (heir apparent to the Gilded Throne)...has also allowed as how he no longer goes to National Parks as they are far too overcrowded and degraded for his tastes!!
While we have yet to see an Ag Secretary.....it is very difficult to see in what way Jim Bolen's estimation of the nature of the coming Public Lands policy can be mistaken! Also like the Gilded Age...there will be the opportunity for a lot more money to be made by Congress and Administration Critters if Public Lands exploitation is managed and arranged at the Federal level...expect more of the Teapot Dome type scandals....if we only still had a muckraking press to report such scandals!!...no worry there this band of Oligarchs!!
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 06, 2017 06:49 PM
Jim.....Methinks that Steve B. may be one of those people who do not yet realize that they are no longer Republicants.....the purged and purified Randian entity that has become the White Nationalist Party has left him...and so many others...far behind! ...and no longer represent him....he is now a free thinking Independent...like me!!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 06, 2017 08:52 PM
David;
Just because someone is a republican does not mean they are a white nationalist. This type of stereotyping is moronic. If you don't like the republican party argue against it's politics not some imaginary White Nationalist Party.
I have Friends on both sides of the fence. I work with a Navajo who is very conservative and leans republican. Is her also part of the White Nationalist Party? You can do what you want but I would suggest you give up this type of tripe which seems to have become so common from both political sides.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 06, 2017 09:39 PM
james....Ever hear of Uncle Toms?....how about all those Jews who voted for Hitler?....What about the Log Cabin Club?...and what about those 53% of white women who voted for an admitted sexual predator who loves to objectify women? This is not about "politics" per se...this is about ethics and core values!...not delusions and hypocrisy!
Oh!...And thanks for your regal dispensation that allows that I "..can do what you want" ...oughten I to tug my forelock, sir?.... Furthermore.. I gave up tripe a long, long time ago...being vegetarian! ....and what kind of tripe would you have me switch to.
If you like the Republican Party, argue for its politics...and we shall see if they are legitimate!...and what Republican stereotype are you suggesting, anyway?
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 07:58 AM
David: your "flowery language" and all sorts of "vague references" really isn't helping the discussion of the "here and now." And, yes, David, I fully realize where much of the Republican party has headed, but not all Republicans. I have been, and will continue to be, working in the "trenches." Visit www.conservativestewards.org . There is also a related .501(c)4 PAC, Conserv America. Both are offshoots from the former Republicans for Environmental Protection.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 10:34 AM
Steve....I must say that "and all sorts of 'vague references' stands out as being pretty darn vague in itself! Since you didn't leave me much to go on, I can only say that the vagueries in question may either be shorthand for topics I have discussed before....or elsewhere.....I do make an effort to keep comments on complex subjects as short as is possible ( boy,,,I can see the web manager's eyes rolling at that one!).
Didn't the Republicans for Environmental Protection finally give up the effort and disband some time ago?...( it was all falling on deaf ears!)...Given the Republican Party Platform and the coming Administration of the Siberian Candidate....you folks are going to have your hands full just getting any of those Billion Dollar Babies to even listen to you this time around...while helping their Congress Critters to dismantle any regulations and environmental protections that get underfoot!..."Sorry, man, we just can't hear you over the shredder!".
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 10:42 AM
Republicans for Environmental Protection came to a close during the Great Recession, for a variety of reasons. And, no, our arguments were not falling on deaf ears, and still aren't. There are Republican individuals friendly to the conservation cause in both the House and the Senate, in D.C. It's all a matter of cultivation, which both offshoot organizations continue to do.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 03:03 PM
Steve....Those references to the instances when the views of Republicans for Environmental Protection did not fall on deaf ears...and to what effect....are passingly vague!! "And still aren't"??.... current fellow travelers in Congress are, obviously, deeply closeted....for the lay observer can see no sign of any of them.....or they would have been "primaryed" by the Freedom Caucus and their ilk!!
Steve Bonowski
Steve Bonowski Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 03:15 PM
They are "passingly vague" for a reason. I'm not going to discuss organizational strategy on an open, public, web site.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 03:43 PM
....On the other hand Steve,...it is in the art of a politician critter never to overtly disagree with a constituent....much less tell him/her to pound sand about a given issue!! Case in point....I have here before me a letter from a Republican Senator in response to my letter about Public Lands transfers stating how much he "values and appreciates my thoughts on this important issue" and going on to state how pleased he is to be able to respond......and then proceeds to pledge his undying devotion to hunting, fishing and "recreational opportunities" on our Public Lands ....all without managing to actually respond to my letter in any meaningful way, whatsoever.....except to note at one point..(well buried, of course,!....that he only supports responsible access to our Public Lands "when it is in the best interest of local communities and supported by local leaders....and that he also supports efforts of local municipalities to petition for the release of Federal Lands."!
He has made no statement about the Bears Ears or Gold Butte....but has referred to Cliven Bundy as a "patriot" in the past! I am well aware of his position on all this...but his letters are always very well nuanced and carefully non-committal !
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 03:51 PM
Get Smart's cone of silence at work....good thing that or Bishop and Murkowski would have them "guts for garters!"
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 04:14 PM
So.....I take that to mean that nothing of actually consequence has been effected by the Republicans for Environmental Protection...or its successors....I gather we are still plotting environmental coups over wine and cheese meet and greet sessions!....nothing wrong with fiddling while Rome burns when you know that there is nothing for it anyway!! Much of what we all do is by way of feeling the need to take some action while most of the populace does absolutely nothing while making matters still worse!
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 05:13 PM
Oh, David is so true about our Congresscritters.

Steve B: I can halfway understand where you're coming from with your org; that said, as the Republican Party as a whole shifts further right on these issues as well as others, I am unsure how much "cultivation" will be accomplished. Ditto for the Log Cabin Republicans David mentions. Of course, if we had multi-party parliamentary government, the Log Cabin folks could join the Libertarians. Not sure where pro-environmental (relatively so) Republicans would go in such a case.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 05:57 PM
That is a very good question, Steve!....It would depend on the breakout of individual priorities I would expect. Libertarianism is just as impossibly unrealistic as Communism in the real world.....they both have the fatal flaw of failing to acknowledge human nature....and will always end up totalitarian (and acting very much the same!).. as that reality sinks in.
As for the A-Gays of the Log Cabin...they all think that the Donald will save them ( ironic how rich Jews thought the same about Hitler and Mussolini !)....They will make a dive for Progressivism in the end...and that may be the end by then!!
My best guess is that the vast majority of the relatively pro-environmental Republicans would have to gravitate to some Bull Mooseish (if that is the word!) wing of a Progressive Party....especially as the reality of Global Warming sinks in (we ain't seen nothin' yet from Mother Nature!)...and the vital importance of the relatively healthy ecosystems (especially wildlands) that we still have will become more obvious to people who can see anything at all beyond their own, unenlightened, selfish interests!
As I have said so many times, of late, we are presently looking at something completely different in the Werewolf (as I have taken to calling our soon to take charge Demagogue)...and all bets are off. My expectation is that this is the end of functioning (and it hasn't been functioning very well for decades now!) representative government. Things will be even messier and chaotic for awhile ( Demagogues love chaos and confusion!)....but, if my nose for historical precedent is any good ( and I think it ain't bad...if I may be so bold!) we will end up with some form of Autocracy with sham elections.....something like Putin has organized and Erdogan is working on.
As Mark Twain observed..."Monarchy is the natural state of human society".
I know people loath to hear stuff like that...but there it is...Republics never restore themselves ( how many Roman emperors carried on about "restoring the Republic"!??...even centuries later!!...give me a break!
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 06:33 PM
Steve....There is also this to consider....if one strips the titles off of the parties....it is my view that, from a purely policy
standpoint, the present DLC led Democratic party is essentially identical to the old moderate to moderately conservative Republican party of its pre-1970s-1980s transition period. With the acquisition of the Dixiecrat racists in the mid-1960's and addition of the Hyek/ Randians starting with Reagan...the Republican party did, if fact, become a modern reconstituted White Nationalist party....artfully disguised by dog whistles! Think on that a bit before you reject the concept out-of-hand! I think it works.
Jim Bolen
Jim Bolen
Jan 07, 2017 06:41 PM
David
never knew that Mark twain thought that Monarchy was the eventual plight of human society.Maybe he is right. I would say An Enlightened Monarchy is probably better then a democracy ruled by an ignorant, tribal, anti science, anti science voters that can't see the truth through all the social media fake news crap that we are inundated with.
Steve B.
Maybe I missed something about the republican environmentalists? I would like to know what republicans have been willing to step over the line to support environmental issues. In the last 8 years all I can remember is that the republicans march in lock step against environmental proposals.
But keep searching for the Teddy Roosevelts in your republican flock because we really need them.
In the coming year we will see how many will step over the line to support clean air,clean water,clean energy, paris agreement, public lands, protect inconvenient species such as wolves and grizzlies, new wilderness, UN family planning, planned parenthood etc,etc.
The moderate Republicans (which I presume you are) need to stand up to the radical ideologues in your party. It isn't working staying silent

 .
  
   
Karl Anderson
Karl Anderson Subscriber
Jan 07, 2017 07:05 PM
James Skinner: "We should have more local control. Period..

Says who? America's federal public lands belong to every American. As an American, I have as much right to a say in how my public lands will be used as any other American, whether I live nearby or 2000 miles away.

JS: "Again, why should someone from new York which is .7 percent federal ownership have any say about land in Utah?"

Because America's federal public lands belong to every American, no matter where they live. Period.

JS: "How about the federal government letting go of all the land in the west it is just sitting on it. "

How about recognizing that millions of Americans consider that the highest and best use of their federal public lands is to protect native biodiversity? By "just sitting on it", the federal government is protecting it from exploitation for private benefit, saving us the cost of biodiversity loss. Let's not forget that Cliven Bundy stopped paying his grazing fees because the BLM wanted him to remove his cattle from critical habitat for the desert tortoise.

America's national biodiversity heritage belongs to all of us. Just because your ancestors moved west hoping to make a buck off the land, you don't get to decide for the rest of us which species of native plant or animal should be allowed to become extinct. Period!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 07, 2017 07:45 PM
Karl;
I suggest a trade. You give up the private land in your state and then my state can have a bit of our public land.
Karl Anderson
Karl Anderson Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 02:18 PM
James Skinner: "I suggest a trade. You give up the private land in your state and then my state can have a bit of our public land. "

Huh? Except for the tiny patch I'm paying the mortgage on, I have no more rights to any of the private land in New Mexico than you do. And your state already has the federal public land within its borders, i.e. all its residents already have the same rights to that land as I do. Are you talking about allowing only residents of your state access to its public land?
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 03:56 PM
Jim....I got a chuckle out of your comment because I have a wonderful quote from a Loyalists in the mid-1770s asking...."Which is worse....one Tyrant 3,000 miles away...or...3,000 Tyrants one mile away?" That carries such great insight!
Mark Twain did not perceive Monarchy (his shorthand for any rule by individual!)....as the plight of man , but as the natural stasis of society...which it would return to even after the disruptions of Anarchy, Democracy, Republics, Plutocracy or Oligarchy. Interestingly, this the exact sequence outlined by the Ancient Greek political philosophers
(such as Plato and Aristotle).....No one can tell me that those guys didn't know stuff about human nature!!
An inconvenient truth about our early history is that the Constitution was formulated by some of the leading lights of the early American Plutocracy specifically to institute a government of "King in Parliament" that would be similar in
its particulars to the British system...as a means of reigning in the power of the state under the Articles of Confederation....which they saw as being dangerously Democratic!
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 04:06 PM
Let me amend the above...That last should be clarified :
The Constitution was designed to reign in the power exercised by the individual state governments...that were menacing the wealth and power of the local Plutocrats....hence the preoccupation with the Lockean concept of "property'...and the limitation of the franchise to "white males of property 21 years of age or older"
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 04:26 PM
David: Indeed, some aspects of Philadelphia 1787 were themselves anti-democratic, as the likes of Sheldon Wolin and others have pointed out.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 05:06 PM
Not just some.... All of the Federalist Plutocrats who organized the Constitutional Convention and subsequently voted for ratification of the finished product...and organized, in quick order, the states' special voting conventions...and guided the selection of the delegates at each said convention...(as well as the location of the conventions!) ..and made deals and promises (such as ambassadorships).....to win over reluctant fence-sitters, were, to say the very least, interested in instituting severe limitations on Democratic processes!! Even with all of the horse-trading and deal making...it was a very close run thing.....and it came damn close to coming unglued on several, occasions in its first years!
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 08, 2017 05:22 PM
Speaking of the Bears Ears NM.....and I believe that we were at one point!....I have a modest proposal to make that has the potential to radically change the dynamic in San Juan county and hence go some distance in securing the First Nation's win in this.
It is my understanding that the Native Americans in San Juan county hold the majority...and, in fact, find themselves in the very same position that Blacks found themselves in many counties in the South. If this populace gets itself together and organized (even discounting all of the Uncle Toms...of which, I am sure, there are many!).....and with the
assistance of people such as the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Navajo Nation (the Justice Department is, obviously, going to be worse than useless in this effort now!!)....would certainly have the potential to reverse the table on all of those nice White folks in San Juan county who currently have their collective foot on the First Nations' collective neck...and could certainly get them to pay attention at the very least....a freshly gutted Voting Rights Act notwithstanding! A Standing Rock sort of action would also serve to get some national attention, if required!!
We could easily see a very different San Juan county....not to mention a neglected chunk of the Navajo Nation getting some real attention and respect from Window Rock!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 09, 2017 07:38 AM
David Hamilton;
It actually appears that Whites make up the majority of San Juan county.
Looks at the 2015 numbers. Fairly close though.
Also what collective foot is on the native American's neck?
http://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/PST045215/49037
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 09, 2017 09:12 AM
James: The collective foot on American Indians' next? In San Juan County, it started with white Mormons trying to Mormonize Indians, often under acting as host families so Indian children didn't have to go dozens of miles to school every day. Then, it's teachers trying to de-Indianize them. That's just for starters, and it was easy to think of that. Wanna try again?
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 09, 2017 10:16 AM
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 09, 2017 02:47 PM
OMG!!...So Steve, Did you venture into the nytimes essay referenced above!?....As the stomach turns we venture down the rabbit hole! What more can be said!?...what more needs to be said?!
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 09, 2017 03:46 PM
David W.
I decided to let the article speak for itself. If you have problems with it share them. Oh wait. Let me guess. White Nationalist Party and Uncle Toms are ruining everything. Mormons too. Got it.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 09, 2017 04:34 PM
james....Wise decision!....the article certainly does speak for itself....and most eloquently in what is left unsaid !
It looks like the makings of a sequel to the "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" to me....Oh!...the arrogance and presumption of the " Whitey"!...
Steve Snyder
Steve Snyder Subscriber
Jan 09, 2017 07:12 PM
David: Oh, I remember that when it first came out. "Some," James, is nowhere near "most," for starters. Otherwise, per David, I think it speaks for itself.
james skinner
james skinner
Jan 10, 2017 07:54 AM
Steve;
Still waiting to hear your litany of problems that the whites in san juan are inflicting upon the Navajos(please come up with something within the last decade so that it is actually relevant to your original comment, not something from decades ago). Let me hear your concerns.
Also what are your problems with the NYT article? I can guess but it would be nice to hear it.
David W Hamilton
David W Hamilton Subscriber
Jan 10, 2017 01:47 PM
My advice to Steve....and others who might be tempted to respond any further to james' (he isn't even a subscriber!!)) NYT post.... is not to take the bait!!...don't even go there!!...there ought to be a radioactive warning icon !!....Don't be a dumb coyote like me and bite the poison!!