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Front Page » October 20, 2009 » Opinion » Letter to the editor: A four letter word
Published 2,180 days ago

Letter to the editor: A four letter word

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By Mel Coonrod


I recently spent two days with Mr. Chad Booth, the producer of the TV series "At Your Leisure." The purpose of the meeting and tour was to document how energy development had benefited recreation. This is an easy call considering royalty monies, and property tax from energy companies' largely pay for all of the recreation venues in our county.

As I drove Mr. Booth into Nine Mile Canyon, the subject of environmental pressure groups such as "SUWA" came up. Mr. Booth continued to use the term "environmental" in association with "SUWA - Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance." I finally stopped the car and said I resented his use of that term when he referenced "SUWA."

I am an environmentalist and have worked for 40 years in the environmental field. I have worked with the BLM, USFS, USF&W, NRCS, BIA, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Elks, Kiwanis and a hundred other groups. I have been involved in numerous environmental projects, from projects that range from requiring scuba gear to clean up Catalina Harbor, to eradicating thistle at the head of Consumers Wash. The only group I have never seen working on an environmental project is SUWA.

To call SUWA an environmentalist or group is like calling "Al-Qaeda" The guardians of freedom!

SUWA is a group of lawyers or litigators. I would be surprised if the majority of them even own a pair of boots. The only interest they have or care about is "ink."

I mean "SUWA" generates their funding by portraying energy development as "bad." They are David fighting the evil Goliath- much the same way Al-Qaeda portrays America as the "Satin - The Anti-God." Both concepts are equally false.

If SUWA did not have an evil giant in energy, they would have to make up a new evil to fight, or they would go broke if they could not generate "ink" or publicity and play on people emotions to protect the world for little Billy or Susie generations to come. These litigators would need to attempt to go out and get a real job and based on what I have seen they would most likely fail!

Every man, women, and child in the West that wants a good education for their children, decent schools, roads, parks, public services or the good life needs to promote reasonable development on our public lands, forests, and state lands. The position to lock up these lands as wilderness serves no purpose other then to sit economic development of our area back 100 years. "

SUWA is a four-letter word.

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