I am trying to remember the words of the Gerald Manley Hopkins poem in the last stanza. ‘What would the world be once bereft of wildness and wet, wildness and wet’
Fifty years ago Wednesday the Wilderness Act was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson. The act gave a legal definition to the term “wilderness:”
A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain.
Nine million acres of public land were initially designated as wilderness. The act is one of the most significant pieces of environmental legislation in American history, because it concerns land and water already designated as national park, forest, or wildlife refuge, and forever protects these wild areas from damage due to logging, grazing, mineral extraction, road-building, construction – or any human manipulation, good or bad. The act essentially says “Enjoy these places and life forms, but don’t alter them.” Keep Them…
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