Thank YOU Commenters

Posted on Monday, May 7th, 2012 by »

The period for commenting on the draft land management plans for the Kootenai and  Idaho Panhandle National Forests came to a close on Monday. We would like to thank all the folks who sent in comments in support of the Scotchmans!

Compared to taking a hike, stalking wolverines, marching in July forth parades or wearing a Scotchman Peaks logo hat, writing plan comments is about the least exciting thing to do in support of wilderness, yet it may have the longest lasting value.

If you would like to read a copy of the comments that the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness Submittee, we have posted them on this page on our website:

http://www.scotchmanpeaks.org/pdfs/FSPW_CommentsKIPZ_May2012.pdf

Making your voice heard is one of the fundamental building blocks of democracy. Our public lands are managed for timber, mining, conservation of species, recreation and wilderness, of course; but, ultimately, our public lands are managed for people – for you, me and everyone across our communities and our country who ever look out the window of a passing car.  They are managed for our children and their children. As Woodie Guthrie would say: “this land is our land”.

And so we appreciate that there are folks who will take the time to express their thoughts on how best our public servants manage these lands.  If you did so, pat yourself on the back!

If you missed this opportunity, fear not, there will be more opportunities ahead. Managing public lands, manageing the Scotchmans is about more than setting a one time vision, it is about a continuing commitment to be good stewards, to help our agencies make good decisions.

Now the fun begins for forest service planners – they get to read all the many comments sent in, and analyze them, and act on or answer them. Expect a run on Evans Brothers coffee. In another 6 months or so, there will be a final plan out and we will ask you again to speak up for the Scotchmans.  Hopefully one day there will be legislation looming on the horizon and we will ask again for supporting comments.

Democracy is not a one time sporting event, it is shaped in the long-term by those who choose to participate. We hope you will be there with us!

About The Author:

Phil Hough is the Executive Director of the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness.

An avid long distance hiker, Phil's experience on the Appalachian Trail, Pacific Crest Trail and Continental Divide Trails brought a passion for wild places and motivated him to work towards protecting the one of the last and largest wild places in northern Idaho and Western Montana, the Scotchman Peaks.

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