National Monuments Talking Points
What’s At Stake
The Trump administration wants to shrink — or even eliminate — some of our most important and recently established national monuments and open them up to industrial extraction, including the fossil fuel and mining industries. President Trump has issued an executive order that threatens 27 of our national treasures including the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments in Utah, as well as the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument off New England and many others. This is an unprecedented attack on America's national parks, public lands and oceans and we must stop it.
What We Want
Target: U.S. Congress
Primary Target: Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke
Message: Secretary Zinke, I urge you to stand strong against President Trump's attempt to roll back national monument protections, which would serve corporate and extractive industry interests, not the American people.
Secondary Target: U.S. Congress
Message: Senator/Representative, Attempts to dismantle national monuments are an attack on our nation's historical, cultural and natural heritage as well as our environment. I urge you to stand strong against President Trump’s attempt to roll back protections for America's cherished national monuments and wildlands, which would serve only corporate and extractive interests, not the American people.
1. America’s public lands and oceans belong to all of us. The government holds them in trust for the benefit of current and future generations.
2. National monuments have been deemed worthy of permanent conservation because of their unique resources and wildlife, ecological importance, and vulnerability to encroachment and destruction.
3. National parks and public lands and waters help define who we are as a nation. Attempts to dismantle national monuments are an attack on our nation's historical, cultural and natural heritage.
4. National monuments play a role in America’s response and contribution to climate change because many of them harbor vast reserves of fossil fuel and timber, which are mostly made off limits to development when a monument is created. The monuments protect ecosystems vulnerable to climate change, store atmospheric carbon, and, in some cases, serve as sources of water for nearby communities.
5. Trump’s executive order is unprecedented attack on our national parks, public lands and oceans, a blatant giveaway to Big Oil and other extractive industry interests, and another brazen attempt to undermine our bedrock environmental laws.
6. National monuments serve as important economic drivers. The more than hundreds of millions of visits annually to monuments, parks and other Interior Department sites contribute to an $887 billion-a-year outdoor recreation industry that supports 7.6 million jobs.
7. Most Americans don’t want to see monuments’ protections removed. The public overwhelmingly supports national parks and monuments. Trump’s threat to roll back monument protections is wildly out of step with public opinion. The Interior Department closed its comment period on the president’s monuments plans in July of 2017, and more than 2.7 million people called for protecting monuments.
8. Our national monuments make America great. Let’s keep it that way. Let’s put our time and resources into managing our monuments well, rather than debating whether they should exist.
9. President Trump’s order has set into motion an assault on existing monuments and one of our most important and beloved conservation tools: the Antiquities Act.
10. Over a century ago, Congress created the Antiquities Act to authorize presidents to protect America’s cultural, historical, and natural heritage for future generations—a power that has been used by eight Republican and eight Democratic presidents to safeguard iconic areas including the Bears Ears, Northeast Canyons and the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monuments, the Statue of Liberty, Muir Woods, Death Valley, and the Grand Canyon, which was a national monument before it gained national park status.
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