The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution
sets down our right to peacefully assemble in protest of our government's
policies. When we exercise our rights, we help maintain our liberty.
When the Forest Service was founded, Congress intended that the public forests be managed in a responsible manner and that the Forest Service be accountable to the public. Today, however, the Forest Service violates federal laws with only a minimum of restraint. It is patriotic for citizens to fight to uphold the law. Citizens must demand that policy be formulated, legislation written, and laws upheld according to the will of the American people, not industrial special interests.
Patriotic action means different things to different people. Any time you express your opinion directly to the person you seek to influence, you engage in patriotic action. When you write a letter to your Congressperson, attend a rally, boycott a consumer item, present a petition, pick up litter with your neighbors, write a letter to the editor, or take part in a legal, peaceful protest, you are engaging in patriotic action.
When you take a stand for something you believe in, when you speak out with passion and knowledge, you cause others to reevaluate their own beliefs about society and the world. When you take action, other people become inspired to join you and to stand with you. And when many people stand together, the strength of their voices grows exponentially, allowing them to create change otherwise considered impossible.
Five years ago, most Americans thought that their National Forests were protected from logging. This untruth has come to light because grassroots activists have thrust forest issues into public debate.
The current forest protection debate was itself catalyzed by a handful of peaceful protesters in the Pacific Northwest. Patriotic protests were used to bring unprecedented attention to the fact the government was breaking its covenant with the people and that a desperate ecological crisis was going unnoticed. Even now, these activists continue to remind us of our responsibility to the ecological needs of the ravaged Earth. Activists stretch the limits of our imagination, allowing us to conceive of a vision for the return of healthy forest ecosystems and a clean environment. TOP