Like ordering a meal in a Chinese Restaurant.
"The State of Utah will take five National Parks from Column A. We'll also take six out of eight of the National Monuments from Column B. The last two Monuments upsets our stomachs and State's Rights sensitivities."
The two offending Monuments? Grand Staircase/Escalante and the recently added Bear Ears. I'll digress for a moment.
The state of Utah goes out of its way to promote its natural beauty. The Utah Office of Tourism has fostered "The Mighty Five" marketing campaign. This is in reference to Utah's National Parks. UOT purchases advertising space in the NY Times, LA Times, Outside, Fodors, Sunset and CBS This Morning. On the International scene, the "Beehive State" funds tourist bureaus in Japan, Germany, UK and France. Utah is on a mission to attract selfie-stick wielding mobs of hikers, sightseers, adventurers and wanderers. Some don't even speak English! The outsiders come, spend money and eventually leave. People don't come to Utah to go nightclubbing.
In 2012, tourists spent an estimated 7.4 billion dollars in Utah. They contributed 960 million in state tax revenues too. Definitely not chump change. Tourism is big business in Utah.
I'll digress again.
National Parks and Monuments are different in how they came to be. A NP is designated by an act of Congress. A NM is created by the President under the power of the 1906 Antiquities Act.
From Wikipedia: "The Antiquities Act of 1906, (Pub.L. 59–209, 34 Stat. 225, 54 U.S.C. § 320301–320303), is an act passed by the United States Congress and signed into law by Theodore Roosevelt on June 8, 1906. This law gives the President of the United States the authority to, by presidential proclamation, create national monuments from federal lands to protect significant natural, cultural, or scientific features. The Act has been used over a hundred times since its passage. Its use occasionally creates significant controversy. On April 26, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order to review the Antiquities Act."
Could the fair people of Utah dislike the Grand Staircase/Escalante Monument because it was proclaimed by a Rhodes Scholar philandering Democratic President? Or in the case of Bear Ears, a Black (gasp!) Democratic President? I would say a possible maybe, since the other six National Monuments are never mentioned in the debate.
The politicians of Utah want to reduce the size of the GSENM and totally eliminate National Monument status for Bear Ears. They now have an Federal Administration who favors missiles, and mining over Monuments. The 111 year old Antiquities Act is now under fire. In our Nation's short history the President's use of this Act has been Fait Accompli. Well, there's nothing normal/usual about this Reality TV Administration.
So back to the State of Utah. Why is it OK to be a whore for the National Parks within your boundaries but protest two Wild Areas which are now being saved and protected for future generations? Create a National Monument and the tourists will come. They will spend money for the long term. Mines are finite, tourism is not.
Utah! Are you in or out when it comes to conservation. There is no sort of being pregnant when it comes to making America Great. Poop or get off the pot.
One more digression: An apt quote seen in the GSENM Visitor Center.
"When some of us says, "look there's is nothing out there." What we are really saying is, "I cannot see."
Terry Tempest Williams
We have an Administration who is blind.
All these photos are from GSENM.
Think about this,