WTF? ATVers plan illegal event to promote their illegal activities

WTF? ATVers plan illegal event to promote their illegal activities

UPDATE: Steve Casimiro of The Adventure Life is way ahead of me on this topic. Click on this update to check out The Adventure Life to see how you can help fight this illegal activity in the wild Paria River area.
I don't get it. A group of motorized recreationists – who overwhelmingly vote for Republican's chanting a "law and order" mantra – plan a mass illegal motorized ride through a remote wild area where motorized recreation is banned (and has been banned for more than 30 years!), to promote the idea that they have the right to continue their illegal activities because they've been doing so without consequence for the last 8 years! Forgot that 78 percent of all Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands in the west are open to motorized recreation – these Jeepers, motorcyclists and ATVers demand access to the remote, pristine Paria Canyon area of the Escalante Staircase Monument. There's word that some county commissioners from southern Utah and perhaps even Utah state legislators (all members of the "law and order" party) plan to join in the illegal ride this coming Saturday. Laws, apparently, are for the other guys. The big event is planned for Saturday, May 9, and calls for riders, Jeepers and "all motorheads" to gather and ride up the "road" that is the Paria River. Kanab resident Shawna Cox is organizing the event and claims more than 1,000 motorists will take part, and that the BLM will not do anything to stop them. Of course, in that she's probably right. BLM officials have shown a willingness to crack down on protesters and event organizers, but only if they are trying to protect the land, not abuse it! Just last year, BLM officials brought suit against Tim DeChristopher, an environmental activitist who PEACEABLY fought questionable land use auctions (he placed winning bids in the auctions but didn't plan on paying them off - the parcel auctions were later completely revoked, not because of Tim's bids, but the parcels were NOT appropriate for the suggested uses. In other words, Tim was RIGHT ALL ALONG but he was still prosecuted). Meanwhile, BLM officials turned a blind eye on organizers of various anti-government protests such as the Sagebrush Rebellion that cut illegal roads through federal lands, and protests that destroy monument trails, signs and facitlities. Indeed, these activities over the last 12 years were frequently hosted by local and state Republican leaders, including Utah's Kane County Commissioner Mark Habbeshaw who has made it a habit to not just ignore federal land use laws but to actively and willfully break those laws. BLM has ignored, and some workers have even assisted, Commissioner Habbeshaw in his illegal activities. No prosecutions. I don't begrudge people the privilege of riding motorized toys but those riders have to respect the laws and other users. Once an area is open to motorized use, its essentially ruined for other uers (hiking amidst speeding ATVs is less than enjoyable and very dangerous!) Most federal BLM lands are open to motorized use. They already have most of the BLM land in the west for their activities. Why do they think they need more? And why do they feel its okay to break the law to promote their illegal activies? It's been illegal for motors to be used in the Paria River area since the Nixon administration. It wasn't until the Bush II years that their illegal activities were ignored. Now that a new administration plans to once again enforce federal law – as they are REQUIRED to do! – the radical right plans their protest ride. Read more about this planned illegal event in the Salt Lake Tribune, here Don't like it? Or maybe you do? Regardless, feel free to send a note to BLM to express your opinions: Click here to go to the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance page to send an email note to BLM Headquarters, so send your thoughts to: Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument BLM, Kanab Headquarters 190 East Center Kanab, Utah 84741 (435) 644-4300 Fax (435) 644-4350 escalante_interagency@blm.gov BLM Washington Office Director: Mike Pool E-mail: Mike_Pool@blm.gov 1849 C Street NW, Rm. 5665 Washington DC 20240 Phone: 202-208-3801 Fax: 202-208-5242
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