Utah's land rebellion leaders could use a history lesson


It appears Utah officials are at war with the United States. Gov. Herbert says he won’t let Secretary of Interior Salazar run roughshod over us, making decisions about our lands. Rep. Bishop and Chaffetz and far right legislators make noises about taking back our land and nullifying federal laws. Taking back? When did Utah ever own it?


Later in the piece....


Citizen groups like those in Cache Valley existed throughout Utah. Land was moved, by local initiative, from the unprotected public domain into protected status of National Parks, National Monuments, National Forests, National whatevers. There was resistance, but that resistance came from individuals and corporations who were getting “free” use of the land at the expense of the land’s owners — we the people.

Now, almost all the federal public land has been put, at the request of the people, into protected status. The management of that land is delegated to our hired hands: the Secretary of Interior for parks, BLM, etc. and the Secretary of Agriculture for the Forest Service.

These public servants answer to us, not a governor or legislature of any state. The lands they manage, our public lands, belong to me, you, a cabbie in New York, a janitor in Chicago, a teacher in Atlanta and a movie star in Hollywood. Taxes from that cabbie, janitor, movie star and teacher come to Utah to manage our land.