Hello and Happy Sunday!
Yesterday we received this comment on one of our posts and I asked the author if I could share it here in a post. He agreed.
We met Barry a few months ago and he has become an ally in our Fight for the Spirit of the Badlands! Barry was seasonal help at Theodore Roosevelt National Park in 1975-1976. He went on to pursue a career at Fish & Wildlife.
“After more than 30 years with the Interior department, and having worked on several monster EIS processes, highly controversial, highly complex, I have the following comments. NPS will sign a FONSI (Finding Of No Significant Impact) to remove the horses, no doubt in my mind. Remember, parks are for RANGERS. What the public thinks matters little to them. NPS employees have an extremely tight culture. When parkies go on vacation, they go to other parks. They usually stay with other parkies when they do this. Park culture does not include horses. They are generally very anti-horse.
TR park used to have a horse concession at Peaceful Valley. What happened to that? They used to have park horses for staff use in the backcountry. Do they have any now, don’t know, didn’t see any at the corrals. Is removal of all horse use in the park next?
Is the lawyer ready to go with legal action when a FONSI is signed? Do we have a case?
I believe the only way to keep horses in the park will be through raw-boned, bare-knuckle political action. By that I mean the park is FORCED to keep horses by political fiat. Having a Senator on the Appropriations committee is very helpful, but he needs to get tough with NPS on park budgets, you know, no horses in TR may affect NPS budgets. The tremendous coalition you have built up can really be helpful, can really put pressure on the Governor and Senators to do something. Having lots of submitted comments is also very important. We need to make it look like EVERYBODY is against the NPS, and I think almost everybody is! Another thought; if the Republicans win the White House, we will have a Republican Secretary of the Interior. Given the very Republican nature of ND politics, it would be possible for the Secretary to simply step in and stop any removal of horses from the park, or force the park to do another EA, this time with an outcome favorable to us.
Hey, NPS was forced to allow for the building of an INTERSTATE HIGHWAY through the park (kind of blows their naturalness argument all to hell) we should be able to pressure them into keeping a few little ole horses, right? Endless pressure, endlessly applied.?”
If the Park stays the course and comes back with a FONSI, our lawyers will let us know if we have any legal grounds to pursue in court. Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates is prepared to take this fight as far as we can.
This week I have appointments with 3 other media outlets to help continue to apply pressure and expose the blatant lies we were handed in the Park’s Draft EA. I will also have some new Calls to Action for you as well as blog posts to help you write an impactful comment to the Park.
Thank you for sharing your insights, Barry! We are happy to have you standing with us in our Fight for the Spirit of the Badlands!
Thank you for your support and have a GREAT Sunday in your part of the world!