If you haven’t checked out documentaries on netflix lately. I’d suggest you do. They have a great selection of titles. These include most Ken Burn’s documenaries for PBS, including the national parks. If you do it via netflix online, at least on a PS3 like I did. You’ll say:
“This is GREAT!”
The second episode of the national parks is a truly wonderful story. Teddy Roosevelt actually camped at Yosemite with John Muir, largely alone. Roosevelt blew off local dignitaries in California to do so.
Isn’t that amazing? Could you you imagine any President, let alone lesser politicians doing that today? TR was a thinker but a man of bold action also. Today we have Democrats who seem afraid to be bold usually, and Republicans who seem to sneer at careful and deep though preferring shallow slogans.
Muir of course lobbied Roosevelt for preservation of wild places, with some success. That’s reflected in the large number of places that TR made into parks or national monuments. If TR isn’t a great for other reasons, the parks alone make him such.
He created a national monument to preserve the Grand Canyon stating:
Keep this great wonder of nature as it is. Do nothing to mar its grandeur, for the ages have been at work upon it. Keep it for your children, your children’s children, and all who come after you.
I suppose I’d echo these sentiments, but add this. I think these great places are creations of God. While we should admire them and keep them for our prodigy, they are not ours to do otherwise with. We are just caretakers and should give that duty our full dedication.
Genesis 1: 28
And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.