Our public lands are the best thing about Idaho. Today we can hike up to Castle Peak in the Boulder-White Cloud mountains and enjoy its majesty. That is all thanks to forward-thinking leaders in the 1960s who rallied behind the cause to prevent that mountain from being permanently destroyed by mining activity. If Raul Labrador gets his way, the process of taking Idaho’s best treasures, privatizing them, fencing them off, and presently destroying them for a one-time monetary gain will be a reality. Why not invest in Idaho’s future, which lies in tourism and not extractive industries, and work to preserve Idaho’s natural treasures? Instead of supporting the Boulder-White Cloud monument, Raul opposes it. A national monument designation would do wonders for Idaho’s tourism economy, which small towns like Stanley thrive on. Raul is spending too much time talking to think tanks in Washington, D.C., and he needs to spend more time hiking in Idaho’s public lands. Maybe he could meet a forest ranger and learn about fire ecology and how fires are a vital process in a forest’s life cycle. Maybe he would come to love Idaho’s treasures instead of wanting to ruin them permanently.
Ernest Dunlap, Nampa
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