Well heck….apparently we are still bantering this around. Unfortunately, I feel I have to “slightly” defend myself after being called out on a few of my comments.
In response to Bad Man's repeated attacks on attorneys, I just want everyone to know that High Sierra Hikers' lawyers are all volunteers, working pro bono ("for the public good"). They work hundreds of hours, often for nothing, nights and weekends, just like our all-volunteer members, to bring our case forward. Bad Man keeps implying that our lawyers are somehow getting rich off of Wilderness Act cases. It's not true.
Well…pardon my expressions but most people find it a bit entertaining to poke fun at lawyers “attorneys” considering they are at the end of A Lot of jokes. So, Im not the only one in the land to give lawyers a hard time! I cant say Im pleased to know that HSHA council are all volunteers working for the good of the public. That leads me to the assumption they are all independently wealthy and no longer have to work to make a living. They made money somewhere or somehow, maybe not off the Wilderness Act cases, but Im assuming cases similar, otherwise they wouldn’t be so savvy in environmental law.
I have to say, I find the attacks on the rule of law, and the role of lawyers and the courts to be rather dismaying. As Sarah pointed out, the lawsuits obviously have not been frivolous, as the plaintiff has prevailed. That's the positive role of lawsuits and the courts -- to make sure that the law of the land is being followed. Why is that so troubling to some of us? As for the lawyers, the only environmental lawyers who get rich are the ones defending large corporations, or bringing class action suits for money damages. None of that is involved here”
Well quentinc, its ok for you to have your opinion, it’s a free country and we have the First Amendment. I for one, believe in the Constitution of the United States of America which gives me an inherent right to question the rule of law and government. Maybe I need a refresher in civics, but I was under the impression that the founding fathers were really into questioning lawyers and the courts during the time period of the Revolution. Im not so sure Im out of line questioning that the law of the land is being followed. Who’s land and who’s laws?
I cant fully say I disagree with George. We may have a different approach or philosophy but that’s all tit for tat. The fundamentals are all there. We just have to agree to disagree. So no arrows to sling at gdurkee. Also, I want to be clear, I respect his opinions and participation on HST. I just have to wonder if someone is trying to sell me out…the tradition is that Big Brother doesn’t like the guy questioning the decisions of the courts of government. George, we may disagree, but I have your back on that one….
Also, just to be completely clear. I do not believe the HSHA is in anyway asking the pack outfitters to completely shut down. I have never even eluded to this. I have never called them environmental radicals, although I do believe there are radical people in every group. I do believe in general, there is a nationwide grassroots movement toward eliminating open range grazing, use of stock, logging, off road vehicle use, mining, and a few other uses of public lands.
I don’t believe there is mutual respect across user groups. I wish there was, but it often shows its face even on HST. I have always been an advocate toward respectful discussion. I may push some buttons (I thought lawyers were fair game), but I try to be respectful of other people’s opinions. I don’t feel others extend the same courtesy toward my opinions. I wish people would focus on scientific evidence and not manage resources based on emotion.
As far as the packers are concerned, I think the propaganda begins around the camp fire as discussion. Probably gets blown out of proportion (consider the company). In defense of the packers…its hard not to think someone is out to get you when your industry is consistently bombarded by lawsuits, change in regulations, change in faces and opinions within the regulatory agencies, and overall ill public opinion (which is unfounded based on the ignorance of the general public). Very few folks that visit the “wilderness” know anything about live stock or the role they play. They are more concerned that the horse poo on the trail smells bad or the streams are filled with bacteria making it unfit for human consumption. I hate it when someone uses that as a reason against livestock. Don’t you know they call it beaver fever for a reason? That said…..I know firsthand there is room for a lot of improvement amongst the pack outfits, and maybe even a piece of humble pie may be in order for some of these outfitting groups. A prime example of a good pack outfitter is the Leavitt Meadows Packer Station. I know for a fact that Craig hauls in his own feed, especially if you’re taking stock into the alpine ecosystems. There isn’t enough AUMs in those places for a horse to get an appetizer. Its more expensive that way…but if you have the money to ride in style, you have the money to get an extra mule or two to haul weed free pellets. Its soo much better that way. I think most people would rather enjoy fishing or recreating rather than chasing stock around trying to find where they escaped to “greener pastures”.