Recent news headlines have been flooded with diverse and polarizing issues that affect each of us in different ways. But for Team HuntStand, one particular issue takes precedence and we believe it requires immediate attention from you and every sportsman in our community: Federal public lands are at stake right now. Our friend, Land Tawney, is president and CEO of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers. Please heed his words of wisdom and consider his call to action …
“My name is Land Tawney, and I am a public land owner.
We all are public land owners. We own title to 646 million acres of national forests, national wildlife refuges, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands and national parks.
These places separate us from the rest of the world. Our public lands belong to the people, not the wealthy and elite. Whether you live in New York City or Ekalaka, Montana—and whether you come from a family of privilege or from the streets—in America, thanks to our public lands, we all live like kings. Just like apple pie or baseball, nothing could be more American.
Unfortunately, there are those who want to steal our birthright. Steal our heritage.
Since Theodore Roosevelt helped establish our great public lands system, some individuals and interests have tried to steal or exploit our public lands for their own personal gain. Seeking private playgrounds for themselves and their cronies or trying to make a quick buck. American sportsmen and others have strongly opposed these efforts in the past. Yet a new generation of public lands thieves has emerged.
Today, those who would take what is rightfully yours are gaining ground. In January, Rep. Jason Chaffetz from Utah introduced legislation to take from the American people 3 million acres of public lands (an area roughly the size of Connecticut) in 11 Western states. This was met with extreme opposition from the sportsmen community and a week later, Mr. Chaffetz withdrew his bill for consideration. At state houses across the west, some legislators are calling for the transfer of public lands to the states. This approach makes no sense. States can’t afford to manage these lands. One bad fire season—or road maintenance costs alone—would bankrupt them. Ultimately, states would be forced to offer them for sale … and we the public would lose them forever.
What can you do? Become of member of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers today or make a donation right here. Whether you live in Arkansas, Alaska or Maine, backcountry lands, those places that provide solitude and adventure, are everywhere. Each and every day BHA is fighting to keep public lands in public hands—and making sure fish and wildlife populations and their habitat are there when you arrive.
Follow BHA on Facebook and Instagram. Tell your friends. We might not have billions of dollars behind our cause, but we have the people. Democracy still works in this great country of ours, but only if you step up and make your voice heard. We make that easy for you. Together, we can carry on our great outdoors heritage—and uphold it for our kids and grandkids to experience and enjoy.”