Letters and comments for April 24, 2012

By Observer Upload April 24, 2012 01:28 pm
Letters and comments for April 24, 2012

Limit forest roads


To the Editor:

To the people opposed to the Wallowa-Whitman road plan: Take a breath.

No one is being “locked out” of our public land. If you want to take grandma for a drive in the forest, use the 3,000 miles of roads that will still be available for motorized use. Closure of the remaining roads limits access to the national forest to motorized vehicles, not to you.

Take a hike, ride a bike. You would be amazed at what you can discover outside the confines of your noisy, polluting motorized vehicle. 

As for “forest management,” these forests have managed quite well for millennia without the interference of humans. Must we take up every inch of this planet for economic or personal gain, especially at the expense of clean water, wildlife habitat (including hunting stock), clean air and the pleasures of being in a place that shows no signs of human interference? 

Logging and mining in the last bit of our remaining wilderness forests is economically irresponsible and shortsighted. Road maintenance is financed by us taxpayers, primarily for the purpose of subsidizing timber companies. The Forest Service simply cannot maintain the current number of roads. 

So, in spite of the fact that you may no longer be able to motor where your parents once did, take heart in knowing that you have preserved a wee bit of the wild planet for your grandchildren’s pleasure and habitat for biodiversity in a world where species’ extinction is occurring at an alarming rate.

If I never see some of the Wallowa-Whitman forest, I take pleasure in knowing there are wild creatures and exquisite flora able to survive without being trammeled, stressed or otherwise disturbed by me.

Emelie McNett

La Grande


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