It does not take much time to write or call public officials, particularly since the 2016 election has resulted in so many calls and links encouraging us to do so. As an Early American scholar, I have soaked up enough idealism from the likes of Thomas Paine and Ben Franklin to absolutely assure my deep, abiding patriotism. As said patriot, I am very much of the mind that an active, engaged, informed citizen is necessary to proper functioning and improvement of the countrAdmittedly I need to check myself from becoming a one-issue voter, as I am so deeply certain that our greatest current need is to “Secure the Blessings of Liberty,” a Constitutional principle I definitively associate our shared natural resources: the Blessings that enable our health and survival on all levels of experience. Since the realms of environmental justice do call strongly, and I am glad to speak out in alignment with those loyalties. Focus doesn’t equate with lack of concern outside the primary area. It may be a type of humility.
All of which is to preface: I recently left the following comment for the Department of the Interior head Ryan Zinke. It’s in reply to a motion to de-list grizzly bears from protection.
“I am a tribal member from Michigan, and implore you to consider that these bears are our elders; sacred teachers of strength and humility. You have the opportunity to show these same qualities: keep these Bears protected despite pressure from parties unconcerned with the moral obligation we as humans have to be respectful stewards.”
Who knows if he’ll ever read it. Mostly, I like to think such words are a comfort to others who share the same concerns. We are not alone.