July 2015

Some questions about our new 'club'

By Galen Larson

I am pleased to see some other citizens are also concerned about our county’s new membership in a club called the American Lands Council. I understand that it has a president and communications officer – a man and wife – but I would like to know more. My curiosity has given rise to some questions:

• How many members are there in this club?

• Does it have meetings and a secretary to take the minutes?

• I have not in the past few months received a newsletter explaining what our new mission is. Nor have I heard any voice from those that without my consent joined this club for me. How am I to be updated on the activities of this group?

• Does the club have a membership card? If so, I haven’t received mine.

• Do we pay yearly dues? Do the dues increase?

• How do I, as a member, contact the chairman?

• Where are these meetings held (as I may choose to go)? However, I understand they would be in another state – that seems strange and leaves me wondering, how will membership help our county?

From what little I have gathered through hearsay (which is never accurate), the mission of this group is partly to divide and separate the states. Didn’t we fight a war 144 years ago to unite our beloved United States, making us the strongest and freest nation in the world? If all this foolishness about separating states and giving them the title to our federal public lands and letting them write different rules in each state should actually come to pass, who will provide the money to administer these separate lands? Won’t every state need its own bureaucracy? Why would that be more efficient than having the lands administered by the federal government?

Where and how are we to obtain the money to fight fires and save our beautiful environment of which we are so proud?

There are many additional questions, but I have no answers. I am certain, however, that privatization of public lands, which would be the inevitable result if they were turned over to the states, would very likely cut down on camping and hunting opportunities. Even if the states do not sell these lands, they would surely lease them for clear-cutting or mining as was done in the Cumberlands of the past, and I doubt very much the companies will allow us to trespass on their rights-of-way.

I and, I am sure, many others hope that our commissioners will come to their senses and govern for the longterm benefit of the people of Montezuma County as they were elected to do. We cannot afford to become a separate state divorced from the union. I do not care to be a member of the Mystic Knights of the Sea Club. But if you persist in remaining in this club, I demand more information on this bottle of fish you have dropped me in!

Thought for the day: People say life is a bowl of cherries, but sometimes it’s just a lot of raspberries.

Galen Larson writes from Montezuma County, Colo.