Standing up for regulations

 

Reading the special recreation edition, a theme came through to me: It is understandable and even honorable to push the envelope, stretch the rules, and even break them now and then in the interests of pursuing the right to recreation. Whether biking, BASE jumping, skiing, etc., rules and restrictions are un-American, even when they exist to protect our wild places, and those who challenge them are maverick rogues. I had an eerie sense that somewhere there’s a mirror-image publication written for the extraction industries and ranchers. There, regulations that protect our wild lands are to be challenged and dismantled because they are un-American and restrict corporate growth and profits. It’s OK to frack anywhere, drill and lay pipelines, exterminate predators so that ranchers can run their livestock on public lands. Our wild places are under pressure on the one side by the profit motive, and on the other by the recreation urge.


Anthony Ricketts
Santa Fe, New Mexico