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Letter: We deserve better public lands discourse
First Published Apr 29 2014 05:02 pm • Last Updated Apr 29 2014 05:02 pm

Sunday’s opinion piece by Dana Milbank panders to the worst in all of us. As a nation we should be past the need to rely on logical fallacies in public discourse. It is a mark of intellectual laziness that should hold no place in the discussion of national policy.

Cliven Bundy, as Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has pointed out, is not the face of the movement to claim western lands from the federal government. That movement is a separate issue and can be debated on the facts; no state in the eastern U.S. has anywhere near the percentage of land held by the feds. At issue here is the question of how having that huge amount of land held by the Feds impacts the economies of Western states.

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For Milbank to so freely conflate racism and other bigotry with the movement to claim land for the Western states serves only to convince the unthinking that the entire movement is without merit, and to allow those so inclined to dismiss all such issues with the sentiment "good riddance." This is counterproductive and beneath the dignity of any thinking citizen of the United States. As a people and as a nation, we deserve better.

Carolyn J. Ewell


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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