Who knows what’s in store for the next few years as far as wilderness protection is concerned. Efforts to protect our wild lands have always taken a back seat to other concerns, mostly economic. I’m not at all sure that they haven’t now been locked away in the trunk.
We’re wild animals. We need wildness as much as the grizzly and gray wolf do to fully function as living breathing free human beings. We’ve accepted confinement and captivity in the canned existence we call modern life, but captivity leads to insanity — just ask any lab rat or caged wolf.
We need wide open spaces. We need silent and unspoiled places. We need the raw and the rugged and the untamed. We need places to stretch our eyes out and to see beyond the little tunnels we scurry around in. We need places to let our spirits loose to soar with the eagles. We need to encounter places and other living beings that are big enough and strong enough to put us in our proper place. We need to come back down to earth in a literal sense.
We need the wild to connect with our true nature. If we destroy it for mere money, we’ll be tragically diminished and impoverished, no matter how much money we pile up. We’ll be little more than caged rodents.
A exasperated questioner once asked Bob Marshall how much wilderness we really needed. His reply is classic:
How many Brahms symphonies do we need?
Great answer, no?