Results 1 to 19 of 19
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    181

    Default H.R. 3990 - Ask your Reps to Vote NO!

    I apologize in advance if this is a double post, I ran a search but didn't see anything. Wanted to make sure everyone was aware that Representative Bishop's bill to do away with Antiquities Act has passed committee and has been sent to the house floor. I know we don't all agree on how the Antiquities Act is used, but I know we can all agree that it is an important/critical piece of legislation. Bishop's wishes to completely do away with the act are extremely shortsighted. I urge you to contact your representatives and ask them to vote NO on H.R. 3990. Below is a message I sent to my representative and I will be following up this message with a call, please do the same if time permits.

    Representative Wagner,

    I hope this message finds you well. I am writing today out of concern for our public lands and the Antiquities Act. Based on previous correspondence with you I understand that we do not share the same opinion on our national public lands, but those differences aside I hope you can see the shortsightedness of Representative Bishop's bill, H.R. 3990.

    There are many things that make this country so great and unique. First and foremost are our freedoms and rights. Among these rights are our rights to the vast tracts of public land that have been established by way of the Antiquities Act. As you know the Antiquities Act is one of the hallmark pieces of legislation from the Theodore Roosevelt presidency. Theodore Roosevelt was a visionary and recognized the importance of protecting some of our most precious resources. This great man is always spoken of with great reverence and is so popular that his face is forever enshrined on Mount Rushmore. Representative Bishop’s bill will serve to wipe out part of Roosevelt’s legacy.

    That being said I am not naive and recognize that the Antiquities Act is in need of reform, but if we simply throw it away, as Representative Bishop would like to do, it will be impossible to get it back. Obviously there are far more pressing issues facing country that we should be focused on, but that does not mean we should simply throw legislation out the window simply because we do not agree with how it has been used by recent administrations. Change should occur after reviewing everything at stake, receiving public input and thoughtful debate.

    Kind regards,
    Cody Cass
    What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. - Thomas Paine

  2. #2

    Default

    I am glad to see this thread. Based on my uneducated reading of this bill, it appears that most of the monuments that have been declared would not be allowed. Especially with the exclusion of natural geographic features. Maybe someone smarter would be able to provide a better analysis, but that's what I'm seeing and will be what I'm going to express to my Rep. One who voted for it in committee as well.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Eden Prairie, MN
    Posts
    272

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CodyCass View Post
    recognize that the Antiquities Act is in need of reform . . ..
    Well written, the tone being much better than the average communication from the left or right these days. But I have to respectfully ask, do you really support reform (meaning reform that would limit its current use), or is that a throw away line to appear middle of the road? I don't know you so I can't/won't judge, but too often in this type of setting it is just rhetorically clever language.
    "Freedom is NOT Free"

  4. #4

    Default

    The focus needs to be on killing this bill right now. Whether you are left, right, up, down, or in the middle. This bill is a bad idea.
    Last edited by Jerky; 10-12-2017 at 11:58 AM. Reason: Spelling

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    181

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by VikingsGuy View Post
    Well written, the tone being much better than the average communication from the left or right these days. But I have to respectfully ask, do you really support reform (meaning reform that would limit its current use), or is that a throw away line to appear middle of the road? I don't know you so I can't/won't judge, but too often in this type of setting it is just rhetorically clever language.
    Thank you...Happy to answer your question; Absolutely support reform, definitely not a throw away line. Just as it would be foolish to do away with bulk of the Antiquities Act, it would be foolish to suggest the bill is not in need of reform. I am in no way an expert and won't pretend to know all the answers, but I am reasonable enough to recognize that times have changed since the Antiquities Act was signed into law. When established there was no process in place for protecting our lands and without swift action by Roosevelt they were all at risk of being lost forever. It is important that we have the ability to add more public lands, but is the one sided power that the Antiquities Act provides completely necessary? I'm sure the argument can be made for and against. All that being said, I'm probably very naive to assume that anything close to a compromise can be reached in today's political environment.
    Last edited by CodyCass; 10-12-2017 at 11:59 AM. Reason: small correction

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Eden Prairie, MN
    Posts
    272

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CodyCass View Post
    without swift action by Roosevelt they were all at risk of being lost forever.
    You had me at Roosevelt.
    "Freedom is NOT Free"

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CodyCass View Post
    Thank you...Happy to answer your question; Absolutely support reform, definitely not a throw away line. Just as it would be foolish to do away with bulk of the Antiquities Act, it would be foolish to suggest the bill is not in need of reform. I am in no way an expert and won't pretend to know all the answers, but I am reasonable enough to recognize that times have changed since the Antiquities Act was signed into law. When established there was no process in place for protecting our lands and without swift action by Roosevelt they were all at risk of being lost forever. It is important that we have the ability to add more public lands, but is the one sided power that the Antiquities Act provides completely necessary? I'm sure the argument can be made for and against. All that being said, I'm probably very naive to assume that anything close to a compromise can be reached in today's political environment.
    Agreed, I can see some need for reform of the Act but this bill goes way too far and basically trashes the act all together. I can’t support this act because of how far it restricts the original intent of the Act, and because it opens up all previous monuments for shrinking by any future president by 85,000 acres and more if the states representatives agree to shrink it even further. This is nothing more than another Utah stamped bill by the most anti-public lands guy in congress to trash one of the most important acts to protect public lands in the last century. If the bill was actually reasonable or was not an all put assault on the Act I would be up for listening, but as it stands now and from who the man that’s introduced it we’ll say NO to HR 3990.........This bill had me at Rob Bishop, and I knew it couldn’t be good.
    Keep public lands public, contact your representatives:
    https://secure3.convio.net/trcp/site...rAction&id=415

  8. #8

    Default

    Curious to hear what "reforms" people think an act that has conserved some of the best places in the nation needs.
    A lesson was learned to not mix together silver bullets and a forum site.
    Fowl_Minded

  9. #9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Lamb View Post
    Curious to hear what "reforms" people think an act that has conserved some of the best places in the nation needs.
    Just based on conversations on this forum, cleaning up the language surrounding size would be one. The current phrasing leaves much to interpretation. Also one of the few things that I didn't hate in the current bill was codifying management plans. I admit I do not know what the "right reforms" might be, but I think that there is room for improvement. As I told the staffer at the office of my rep, it needs done with a scalpel not a sledgehammer.

  10. #10

    Default

    When Theodore Roosevelt used the Act, he made millions of acres national monuments. The Grand Canyon NM he created was over 1 million acres, IIRC.

    Marine monuments cover millions of acres of water in order to protect valuable fish stocks, marine ecosystems and culturally important islands, etc. (Fisheries are cultural as well for pacific islanders).

    The current language does leave much leeway. Some presidents have exercised this leeway in small acreages, others large. The one who started this whole thing - thought large.

    What acreage limit would be acceptable to some? Personally, I think we shouldn't change the act. If there are administrative problems, we should look at that first. To date though, the vast majority of "issues" I hear of are people who want to degrade the area for short term economic benefit or for recreational uses that harm sensitive habitats and archaeological resources.
    A lesson was learned to not mix together silver bullets and a forum site.
    Fowl_Minded

  11. #11

    Default

    One "issue" folks might have is the past 100+ years of non-protection by the use of the Act, through the current management have kept the items to be protected intact, therefore some do not see the need for more protection. That was not really the case for most of these lands when the law was written.

    I'm not necessarily against designation, but I'm not necessarily convinced that it's needed in some places or a panacea. Many times I am unclear of the deficiencies of the current management plans that monument designation "fixes".

  12. #12

    Default

    Agreed on the first part. If congress would do their job, then the AA would be used far less than it is today. The Act has always been used because congress wouldn't act, or refused to act in a timely manner. Grand Canyon is a good example. The first attempts to make it a park went back to the 1870's or 1880's. Those failed because people wanted to exploit the resource rather than conserve it. Roosevelt acted unilaterally and protected it, and then within 10 years it became a national park.

    If we had a congress that actually did their job, then we'd be having fewer of these monument conversations. Unless the forces that use this issue as a dog whistle still think we need to eliminate one o the most successful conservation tools in our nation's tool chest.
    A lesson was learned to not mix together silver bullets and a forum site.
    Fowl_Minded

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    181

    Default

    Ben I don’t disagree with you. I know most folks would agree that the unilateral power granted by the act made it possible for Roosevelt to do extraordinary things. It would be a damn shame if Bishop gets his way and the AA goes away. I think that should be the focus right now, stop HR 3990. Then engage in thoughtful debate about potential reform of AA because Congress is never going to do their job so we will continue to need the AA. And if a little reform keeps the Bishops of the world quiet then we should embrace the discussion. Again I don’t pretend to have the answers, but I am open minded and always interested to hear what others have to say. That being said I greatly appreciate the comments presented in this thread. I’m always afraid to read threads on this topic because they often go sideways, so thank all for staying on topic.

  14. #14

    Default

    Well said, Cody.

    I admit my bias in this issue, though. It's going to have to be pretty compelling for me to be willing to support changes to the act and I know that it will be just as difficult to get other groups to support changes as well.

    Kill the bill!
    A lesson was learned to not mix together silver bullets and a forum site.
    Fowl_Minded

  15. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CodyCass View Post
    Thank you...Happy to answer your question; Absolutely support reform, definitely not a throw away line. Just as it would be foolish to do away with bulk of the Antiquities Act, it would be foolish to suggest the bill is not in need of reform. I am in no way an expert and won't pretend to know all the answers, but I am reasonable enough to recognize that times have changed since the Antiquities Act was signed into law. When established there was no process in place for protecting our lands and without swift action by Roosevelt they were all at risk of being lost forever. It is important that we have the ability to add more public lands, but is the one sided power that the Antiquities Act provides completely necessary? I'm sure the argument can be made for and against. All that being said, I'm probably very naive to assume that anything close to a compromise can be reached in today's political environment.
    Thank you for a reasonable thread open to discuss thoughts and consider opposing opinions that may otherwise been overlooked due to the partisan flared intensity.

    My thoughts about the AA: The size of a "National Monument", I believe is the crux of many American's concern. Especially considering the wording per Congress and those archaeologists who rightfully pled for government intervention over the 25 years leading up to 1906. We are a nation of representatives. Our Democratic due process makes America the greatest country in the world.

    Did you know ---> Wyoming is EXEMPT from the Antiquities Act...
    Jimmy Carter who made an attempt to designate 56 million acres in Alaska... Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Jackson fight... Not to touch the recent decades.

    It is a direct contradiction to our greatest asset - our Democratic due process. Within reason, Americans can accept the need for immediate protections - it's the size... that exceeds the interests for our Democratic due process and thus - we have our division.
    Live to work or work to live... Your choice

    Rockin' HT's 2017 MLB Champion - Hall of Famer. Giving Pete Rose a run for his $$$

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Southwest of Helena, MT
    Posts
    73

    Default

    I'll encourage my representatives to vote yes. The Antiquities Act has been abused since Jimmy Carter's time and it'll only get worse, it's time we remove this kind of power from the hands of a single individual. For you people that think that states can't be trusted with managing the lands because they are too easily corrupted how can you possibly believe that a single person can be trusted with this kind of power.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Gallatin Gateway, MT
    Posts
    2,008

    Default

    Is there a question mark at the end of your expression, rammac? ... or are you just schooling me to drink your Utah koolaid and that 2 oranges plus one apple equals a huckleberry.

    BTW, I do think it would be good process for Congress to revisit the Antiquities Act, but not as proposed by HR 3990. I am opposed to it.
    Last edited by Straight Arrow; 10-13-2017 at 08:35 PM. Reason: clarification

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    181

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rammac View Post
    I'll encourage my representatives to vote yes. The Antiquities Act has been abused since Jimmy Carter's time and it'll only get worse, it's time we remove this kind of power from the hands of a single individual. For you people that think that states can't be trusted with managing the lands because they are too easily corrupted how can you possibly believe that a single person can be trusted with this kind of power.
    rammac that is the beauty of our Republic, you are free to take whatever side you choose... I don’t agree with your position, but I appreciate there are two sides. Quick question: was the AA abused when Roosevelt protected millions of acres? You might not agree with how it has been used since Carter, but surely you see the significance it has, right? If so why not open your mind to reform rather than throwing the whole thing away? Thank you for presenting your argument for the bill.

  19. #19

    Default

    Great post and comments, Cody. I agree 100% with your outlook on this bill, the AA, and how we ought to move forward.
    I contacted my representative yesterday, though I do not expect a response or a vote against the bill from him.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •