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Seldom-seen Sen. Steve Daines first introduced S2206 in Washington, D.C., proposing release of Montana Wilderness Study Areas, and is now trying to backfill an illusion of local public involvement with after-the-fact, selective meetings, artlessly dodging a large segment of local constituents. Daines is a top-down D.C. politician hiding from people back home.

Among those Daines selected to be correctly informed about the schedule of his rigged public meetings are Bitterroot Backcountry Cyclists and the Backcountry Sled [snowmobile] Patriots, who are working to reverse WSA protections through litigation. They would smash the pie to get a piece.

If WSAs are released, prevailing Roadless Rule and Forest Plan regulations would allow both logging and roadbuilding in much of the former WSA acreage. This would doom the “backcountry” these groups purportedly love.

When is enough pie not enough?

I consider myself an American patriot. I love and work to protect democracy and our motherland, not just figuratively but the land itself that sustains us. Wilderness is the gold standard of land protection; its protection embodies respect and humility as does true democracy.

Daines is betraying both democracy and wilderness; release Daines, not WSAs.

Larry Campbell


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