we read them so you don't have to
Here are some of the best public comments on Trump’s national monument executive order.
Public lands experts suggested the order was a ploy to open new turf for energy exploration. They said monuments receive plenty of public comment, both from specialists and average Joes.
The experts appear to be right.
Ahead of a June 10 deadline for the Interior Department’s review of Utah’s Bears Ears — among the newest national monuments, and a particularly contentious one — the department received a flood of nearly 150,000 opinions. The great majority implore the administration to leave Bears Ears and the other monuments be.
Poring over 150,000 missives is a definite tl;dr situation — so we pulled some highlights.
“This monument holds immense meaning for the indigenous peoples in the area and to destroy it would continue the erasure of indigenous beliefs and further the genocide of indigenous cultures,” wrote one commenter.
“The air that I breathed in was so much different from the air that I breathed in when I used to live in Korea,” wrote one respondent reminiscing about a trip to Bears Ears. “The visit reminded why our family had immigrated from Korea in first place [sic].”
But it wasn’t all adulations for our “national treasures.”
One comment labeled the designation of Bears Ears an “unjust and unfair federal land grab” — a sentiment echoed by the oil and gas industry. “Undo everything Obama did !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” read another.
The following commenter’s use of caps lock was not at all unique among the responses: “THESE LANDS ARE REAL AND PROVIDE AN REAL CHANCE TO EXPERIENCE SPIRITUAL CONNECTION AND PHYSICAL WONDER. WITHOUT THESE PLACES WE’LL ALL TRAPPED IN OUR IDEOLOGIES AND LIFE BECOMES HELL.”
“Must we destroy everything?” asked one person, while another chided Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to “show some respect for your goddamn country you monkeys.”