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November/December 2005

The Future Of National Parks

Everyone loves national parks--but are they being loved to death? Join representatives from the Park Service, Department of the Interior, Sierra Club, American Hiking Society, and more to explore the fate of this embattled American institution.

Tom Kiernan We need to pull together the administration, Congress, concessionaires, gateway-community chambers of commerce, conservation groups, historic preservation groups, Civil War battle groups–we need to pull everyone together and galvanize a political movement to protect the parks.

Roderick Nash I’d like to see the concept of stewardship spread more widely through the schools and the media, where people will stand up as they did, say, against dams in the Grand Canyon in the 1960s. The same kind of anger that we saw during the Vietnam War. Why not bring that to nature just like we brought it to our treatment of blacks and women and homosexuals? Why not say nature is the next opposed minority and its rights also need to be defended?

Greg Miller The level of environmental awareness and literacy in the United States is probably at a crisis level. We just don’t recognize the tremendous value of the natural habitat and nature as part of our own well-being. We’re not putting enough time and attention into educating our populace. I have three school-age kids, and they tend to get more information about the demise of the rainforest and the Amazon than they do about backyard situations in our own country.

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