Foreman alienates tomorrow's leaders

  I am writing in response to your coverage of Dave Foreman’s essay (HCN, 4/18/05: Dear Friends). Although I respect what Dave Foreman means to the environmental movement, the tactics of his finger-pointing are destructive, shortsighted, ill-timed and wrong. It is critical for the environmental movement to build bridges, re-think strategies, and appeal to the younger generation.

It’s hard to believe that so many leaders of the environmental movement are blaming each other at a time when it is imperative that they collaborate in the face of so many threats. What kind of message does this send to the younger generation? Why can’t environmentalism still mobilize the large number of young people "on mountain bikes" and "plugged into virtual reality?" As the leader of a small conservation program, I’ve employed hundreds of young people who are very concerned about the future of environmentalism and have the mind and muscle to put their convictions into action. Challenging your peers to do better is one thing, Mr. Foreman; burning bridges and stereotypically alienating the leaders of tomorrow is another.

Sean Damitz
Program Director, Utah Conservation Corps
Logan, Utah