Monday, President Trump, while in Utah, announced that Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments will be reduced in size greatly. Bears Ears was created by President Obama and is roughly 1.3 million acres in size. It is expected to be reduced by up to 84 percent. Grand Staircase-Escalante was created by President Clinton and is expected to be reduced by about half. The reduction in the size of the monuments has been pushed for by Utah’s Republican congressional delegation, county commission, and conservative groups. They feel the size of the parks has hurt local development and cattle grazing in the area. On the other side of the argument, Bears Ears monument is culturally important to the local Native Americans because it is filled with ancient artifacts, cliff dwellings and sacred burial grounds. This situation makes a question come to mind. Was President Trump right to reduce the size of the national monuments?
CNN covering the debate around President Trump’s decision to shrink the national parks:
Was President Trump right to reduce the size of the national monuments in Utah? Does the land belong to the state of Utah and should be returned to them? Or, is it an attack on the environment to reduce the size of the monuments?