Letter: Who are the real terrorists in Utah?

(Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune) Opponents of the proposed inland port are escorted out of the Utah Inland Port Authority Board meeting by Utah Highway Patrol officers at the Capitol, June 5, 2019. The Inland Port Authority Board had to cancel its meeting last month after a group of protesters took over the meeting.

“Your three minutes are up.”

That has been the response from the Inland Port Authority Board to heartfelt and often eloquent testimonies, ranging from citizens decrying the inevitable degradation of one of the most important ecosystems in the Western Hemisphere to a mother living near the proposed port tearfully stating her concerns over her child with asthma.

The board members look with blank stares, no eye contact, some scrolling through their phones. I have been to several Inland Port Authority Board meetings and an Envision Utah meeting, and the overwhelming number of speakers are adamantly against the inland port.

With this “robust public discussion,” as board chairman Derek Miller puts it, he and Gov. Gary Herbert are taken aback by angry citizens who are not the placid flock they usually steamroll, but people with the courage to stand up, protecting us from an ill-gotten, ill-conceived and massively polluting project.

Their response is to label them "terrorists."

This by the same Utah leadership which not only allows but promotes vast swaths of mountain range denuded for mining, expansion of refineries right next to our city, incessantly spewing foul air and smoke stacks burning 24/7, phasing out incentives for rooftop solar, charging people more for hybrid and electric cars, creating inroads into wilderness areas for the purpose of mineral extraction and logging and calling it public access, decreasing our national monuments and calling it state’s rights, then prostituting our lands out to the fossil fuel and mining industries, usurping citizens’ tax money to provide corporate welfare to incentivize highly polluting industry.

Who are the “terrorists"? Enough insatiable exploitation of our land. Stop the inland port!

Elizabeth Buirley, Holladay

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