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Know the West

Sociology is essential

  I see there’s another letter condemning HCN’s "drift" into "sociology" eye. One of the biggest mistakes made by conservationists and environmentalists in the past 40 or 50 years was to drift away from sociology. Sociology has to do with the way we humans treat each other and that in turn has enormous implications for how we treat the earth and its creatures.

Environmental breakthroughs of real consequence result from deep involvement in political, economic and sociological reality. There is no isolated pristine place from which meaningful breakthroughs can be levered.

People Who Care About the West ought to be the first to admit, and shout out loud, that knowledge about society is essential. We need more of that, not less. Please, let’s not turn that into an isolated dugout with a big sign: VARMENTALISTS STAY OUT.

Martin Murie
North Bangor, New York