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Editorial: Trump’s NMon cuts are a crime happening right before our eyes

“What this country needs is a businessman for president,” says Gatewood, the banker in John Ford’s classic western, “Stagecoach” set in Monument Valley. He briskly leaves town with a satchel full of money stolen from his clients. Ford’s film was made in 1939. Nearly 80 years later, we indeed have a businessman for a president, and he, too, is stealing from his constituents, only it’s more than money. Donald J. Trump and his chief henchman, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, are robbing the American people of incomparable protected landscapes like Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears National Monuments in Utah.

This is a true crime story happening in real time right before our eyes. Conservation groups have denounced President Trump’s use of the Antiquities Act of 1906 to strip protections from these lands as not only unprecedented, but illegal. The Bears Intertribal Coalition has called it “an assault on Indian Sovereignty.”


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