Monday, December 22, 2008

A Real Monkey Wrencher: Tim DeChristopher...

Southern Utah is special.

I had the pleasure of living there at the start of this decade. The beauty of the Canyonlands is unmatched anywhere. This land, dry, barren, colorful, beautiful, gigantic rock and lovely butte--all deserves to be preserved and designated as sacred. All of it.

Take a hike in Arches National Park or trek in Canyonlands National Park to see the "Holy Ghost" panel of petroglyphs and you will see what I mean.

So Bush and his oily cronies tried to pull a fast one. They wanted to sell off the drilling rights to large sections of beautiful Southern Utah. Seems there might be oil there. So what? you say. If you've seen what drilling does to a sensitive area, it is akin to defecating on the Mona Lisa.

In comes one smart and impulsive student. Tim DeChristopher snuck into the auction where the rights to drill the lands were being sold. He picked up a paddle (and since this was a fast sale which was hastily arranged so that Obama couldn't stop it)--they didn't credential any of the bidders; this Monkey Wrenching Hero bought some of the land. He drove up the price on other sections. He singlehandedly created pandemonium at this awful sale.

The land Mr. DeChristopher bought will not be resold until after Obama takes office. In short, if Obama lives up to his word, DeChristopher saved 22,000 acres of land from drilling (some of it right next to Arches National Park).

This 27 year old Economics student is a hero! His impulsive creative act should inspire us to seek other such creative ways to stop the insanity that is being done to this Earth.

We owe him our "Thanks!!" and maybe a check to help with his legal expenses. He will be skewered by the Courts without a large amount of solidarity from other Environmentalists. We know that Earth First! was essentially dismembered by all sorts of dirty tactics in the 80's and early 90's (including starting a forest fire and blaming it on an Earth First gathering--at least that is what my spouse believes). She should know. When she was arrested for a non-violent action, she was driven in the back of a van (shackled) for hours before being delivered to the booking station (which was only an hour away from where she was arrested). The defenders of destruction wanted to intimidate her. They will do the same to DeChristopher.

But for now, Hayduke Lives again in the actions of Tim DeChristopher. Let us marvel at this kid's chutzpah!

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