I Wonder How Many Americans,
Even Noticed This Historic News.
The Glorious Pictures Above Are:
The Agua Fria National Monument;
The Canyons of The Ancients;
And Pictured Rocks Lakeshore;
Places I Have Visited, Many Times.
“This is an historic moment for our public lands;
Future generations will look back at this day,
As one of the most important dates,
In American land conservation history.”
The Wilderness Society
“I don’t think you can understate the importance of this bill,
To those who value public lands, and the resources they protect.
Thanks to the actions of our Congress and our President today,
We’ll be able to enjoy our public lands, for generations to come.”
For far too many horrendous years now
Politicians have been raping public land
Destroying many of our national treasures
Decimating our national parks once grand
Not caring in the least, what they had wiped out
In their never ending quest for more timber and oil
Not caring at all about future American generations
Who’d have nothing left, after they had their spoils
Tearing up, and digging out, our national treasures
Polluting our rivers, and watching, as our fish died
Many an American conservationist and nature lover
Felt hopeless, yet many persevered, and we all tried
Just last week, President Obama signed an historic bill
Protecting more than two million acres, as ‘Wilderness’
American conservationists, nature lovers, and sportsmen
Are now grateful that many American treasures will be left
And over the course of my numerous travels all across this immense nation
I have stood in awe and admiration, at most of these areas, now to be saved
Today, myself and many other grateful Americans, who treasure them, like I do
Rejoice that some sanity has returned to the Land of the Free, Home of the Brave
On March 30th, President Obama signed a massive land protection package into law (The Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009), designating more than two million American acres as ‘Protected Wilderness,’ and creating a new national system to conserve our public land held in trust by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
This law represents the most significant American wilderness protection in at least two decades, and it provides the highest level of federal protection to areas such as Oregon's Mount Hood, Virginia's Jefferson National Forest, the magnificent Wyoming Range, and many other wondrous and historic sites in California, Colorado, Idaho, Michigan, New Mexico, Utah, and West Virginia.
To my delight, it also protects 12,000 pristine acres of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, along the south shore of majestic Lake Superior.
This new law designates two million acres in nine states as ‘wilderness,’ and a thousand miles of rivers as ‘wild’ – which is a 50 percent increase in our ‘wild river’ system. It establishes new national trails, new national parks, a new national monument, and it provides legal status for the new National Landscape Conservation System, which will protect some of our nation’s most spectacular landscapes.
This 26-million acre National Landscape Conservation System has been designated to protect the most environmentally and historically-significant American lands controlled by the BLM. And this new system, which encompasses 850 historic sites, including Canyons of The Ancients National Monument in Colorado, Agua Fria National Monument in Arizona, and Black Rock Desert National Conservation Area in Nevada, requires the agency to finally make ‘conservation’ a priority, when managing these areas.
It also authorizes the first coordinated federal research program to investigate ocean acidification, and it provides additional funding to protect America’s ecologically-valuable coastal areas and estuaries.
At this law’s signing ceremony, President Obama said, "This legislation guarantees that we will not take our forests, rivers, oceans, national parks, monuments, and wilderness areas for granted any longer, but rather, we will set them aside, and guard their sanctity, for everyone to share. That's something all Americans can support."
I truly hope that he’s right, and that all Americans will now begin to wake up, and to start advocating in earnest that we once again begin to protect and cherish, our many magnificent, god-given, natural treasures.
In my opinion, this new law is a start in the right direction in once again redeeming the conservation ethic of sage Americans like Teddy Roosevelt, Aldo Leopold, Rachel Carson, and so many others before them.
And thanks to this new law, our children and grandchildren will now hopefully be able to enjoy America’s remaining wilderness areas, and our still remaining natural treasures within them, for many generations to come.
©2009, Mr. Ed