Trump recently announced that he was reducing the size of two national monuments in Utah,
Bears Ears and Grand Staircase. Bear Ears will be reduced down to 15% of its original size, while
Grand Staircase will be reduced to about half its original size. As expected, many are losing their
minds without understanding the facts.
First of all, the people of Utah should be thanking president Trump for returning the
land to the states, reducing ridiculous and expensive federal regulations. The parks were
supposed to be upheld by the National Park Service, which is currently operating on a $12 million backlog – meaning they don’t have the funds or the capacity to care for the lands
The regulations of the land by the federal government takes away the rights of citizens
to decide how to best use their land and removes a valuable resource that could be used by
private citizens for economic growth. The notion that land can only be protected through a
national monument designation is ridiculous – realistically, people can hunt, fish, camp, and
responsibly extract resources without doing damage to the land. The federal regulations,
expanded by the Obama and Clinton administrations, looked great on the surface, but really
they were just another expensive government overreach that provided no real benefits to the
Rural communities around the protected land are some of the poorest in the state of
Utah. For example, the home of Bear Ears is San Juan County, often considered the poorest city
in Utah. Over 60% of the land in San Juan was the Bear Ears monument. The restrictive federal
regulations took away cattle-grazing leases, an important source of profit for the people of San
Juan, as well as removing propositions for a coal mine, which would have created jobs and
economic growth in the area.
The coal mine and cattle ranches could have been implemented with environmental
consciousness in mind, where they wouldn’t have ruined the land yet would still benefit the
people. Instead, the government restricted them all together, harming the economy and
stunting job growth. Trump is fixing this.
All in all, the vast majority of opposition to Trump’s monument reduction is anti-Trump
hysteria by people who don’t know the facts. Rather than doing actual research and consider
the real implications of Trump’s repeal, left-wingers and never-Trumpers would rather attack
everything Trump does for the sake of it. The repeal will bring huge benefits to the people of
Utah, reduces the size of the federal government, and sets an important precedent for
privatization increases in the future. We should all be thankful.