I like being a Utahn. But even more, I love being an American.
When I drive through our national forests or the astonishing vistas of our desert lands, I tell myself, as an American, I am a proud part owner of these fantastic places.
When my friends and I head out to hunt deer, we choose a canyon, pitch our camp and begin the hunt — no permission needed. We are all part owners. When we see a stream we want to fish, we put on our boots and grab our rods. Nary a "No Trespassing" sign in sight. Because we Americans all own this land.
Some time ago, I spent a couple of years in the state of Texas, where there are no public lands. The deer hunters I talked to there told me that they had to pay around $50 a day each to hunt on private lands.
Now the governor and his buddies are trying hard to bring the Texas-type "No Trespassing" signs to these wonderful lands that all of us as Americans own by privatizing them. We hope that saner heads prevail, and that these public treasures do not go into private hands.
Jack A. Nelson