On May 31, President Obama proclaimed June 2011 to be Great Outdoors Month. That’s great news! The agenda here is to protect outdoor spaces and increase recreation in nature and local parks.
The Presidential Proclamation
Here’s part of the President’s proclamation:
As we commit to protecting our country’s outdoor spaces, we also celebrate all they have to offer. Our public lands and other open areas provide myriad opportunities for families and friends to explore, play, and grow together — from hiking and wildlife watching to canoeing, hunting, and fishing, and playing in a neighborhood park. These activities can help our kids stay healthy, active, and energized, while reconnecting with their natural heritage. This month, let each of us resolve to protect our great outdoors; discover their wonders; and share them with our friends, our neighbors, and our children.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2011 as Great Outdoors Month. I urge all Americans to explore the great outdoors and to uphold our Nation’s legacy of conserving our lands for future generations.
This is wonderful news for all nature lovers.
Good News … And Bad News
But how’s this for being disingenuous? President Obama signed his proclamation on May 31, but on June 1, his Interior Secretary Ken Salazar sent a letter to the Director of the Bureau of Land Management reversing his December 2010 order to make millions of acres of public land eligible for wilderness protection, as Care2′s Gina-Marie Cheeseman writes here.
So now millions of acres of federal land in the West will no longer be protected as wilderness.
Click here to sign our petition telling Ken Salazar that you disagree with his decision.
Photo Credit: Will Molland-Simms