'(The Blog) With No Name', perhaps best described as a stream of notes and thoughts - 'remembered, recovered and (sometimes) invented'.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

"Devout Locals And Ambitious Outsiders"

In the July 2000 issue of National Geographic, the editor, writes "eloquently" thus (the stuff in braces inline is mine):

"Like ants scaling a loaf of bread, tourists (accompanying snap shows over a score of them) troop to the top of Australia's Ayers Rock--despite polite reminders from park workers and tour bus drivers that the rock, known to the Aborigines as Uluru, is a sacred place. Such conflicts between the devout locals and ambitious ('ambitious'?!) outsiders are not unique to down under. Here in the United States, the Park Service imposed a "voluntary ban" (come again!) during the month of June on scaling Devils Tower National Monument--Mateo Tepee to Native Americans of the northern plains, who hold spiritual rites there at that time and sought to limit the throngs of visitors. Rock climbers sued to overturn the ban, but a federal appeals court ruled against them (did the court go against guys who went against tradition or did the court simply affirm tradition?). As each of us becomes more at home in the farthest reaches of the globe, conflicts like these can only increase. We should develop policies to resolve them now, or we may someday awaken to find a team of tourists rappelling from the Statue of Liberty's nose.(perhaps a 'voluntary ban' would help? Or have some volunteers to politely remind the 'ambitious outsiders' that her nose is ... sacred?)"


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