Dear President Obama: Protect Bears Ears

One thought on “Dear President Obama: Protect Bears Ears”

  1. Anthropologists understand that human ecological concern was well-described by traaditional stories connecting we humans to landscapes and waterscapes in general, as well as to specific travelers and inhabitants. Whether tale be coyote, raven, wolf, bear, even maize, humans see more deeply into our relationships with reminders, reminders that mix our characteristics with that of the land.

    More deeply, we knew the sharing of the growth inherent in cells, in birth and healing with all organisms. Because we ate, we knew our dependency. We breathed, taking in the air that all other visibe creatures had breathed, and will. We have always known the cessation of breath and the changing into other life, seeing all being eaten and decomposed.

    In many if not all indigenous languages this is a Great Mystery. In the Dakota/Lakota/Nakota peoples, for instance, Wa -thing, something, kan – unknowable, tanka – great, was the expression used to refer to this mystery in which we participate.

    I have come a long way, seeing the taking of life, any or all life, from tree to cactus to marten or bison or wolf or bear, by those who gain some feeling of power from it.
    It does not matter that this power is expressed in money or lethality, it runs counter to the long sense of respect, of the very sacredness of fragile life.

    The tracks I have seen of offroad vehicles, lasting without regrowth for well over forty-five years, show us how persistent are thoughtless toying or taking. I have even seen horses imported and used for “recreation” in high mountains and in wet country sand dunes. These heavy marks in places unable to recover from them, show that those who have used these ways are not attending to the vulnerable life that lives only there.
    Unless great areas are elevated to unalloyed recognition as above all sacred, the paving over, the digging up and poisonous tailing will become the only, dead legacy left.

    Studying a tribe in far Siberia, it was found that they regard digging into the Earth as a Wrong. Consider the consequences seen by those peoples who have known the places where mining is done. Consider fro instance, parts of Utah and Nevada where mutagenic illness resulted from such mining, refining, and use – even test – of using the Earth to make war weapons.

    Without holding land or life sacred, we replace mystery, wonder, connection, with small, momentary emotion. Who would worship anger? Is it us?

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