I read the whole of my newspaper's coverage -- maybe two-and-one-half pages, if you include the pictures -- without catching why detractors of the Bear Ears National Monument think it will have such a negative impact.
It seems if the monument is going to have such a negative impact, state and local leaders would be shouting those reasons out, decrying just what it is that is going to damage lives. They are plenty vociferous about how the federal government has no right in this case to impose its will on the people. But, just how the monument is going to have a negative impact? On that, I sifted through the whole of the coverage -- looking, and picking and searching -- without finding why the detractors are displeased.
The closest I came was the comment from Mia Love. "By unilaterally designating the Bear Ears area of San Juan County a national monument, President Obama has undermined the economy and lifestyle of the people who live there, the religious interests of the Native Americans who reside in San Juan County, and ignored local authority," U.S. Rep. Love says in the Deseret News coverage.
Yes, Mia, but how is the lifestyle going to be impacted? What will be different? How will it change? How will it affect the economy negatively? Exactly what is it about this monument that you don't like? Can someone vocalize the damage that is going to be wrought? If they feel the monument is going to have such a negative impact, they ought to be able to verbalize just how it is going to hurt us.
The designation as a national monument does mean no new oil, gas and mineral leases will be approved. I'm guessing this is at least part of the objection. If it is, why cannot opponents of the monument just say so?
I think of how tourism is such a large part of Utah's economy. Will the new designation lead to greater tourism, or will it end up shielding the land from even the tourism it currently has? I do not know. Is more tourism even what we want? If we want to protect this area, maybe we should have less tourism. I'm not sure.
I'm guessing those decisions are actually ahead. I'm guessing the governing authority of the new monument -- which will include tribal leaders -- will settle some of the usages allowed in the monument. If so, the fight for what you want (to some extent), but ahead. President Obama's declaring the area a monument did not end the debate on what should be done with the land, but just opened a new governing body to make those decisions. Yes, no new oil, gas and mineral leases, but beyond that, where do we go?