Wednesday, December 1, 2010


The title is a bit vague. This might be an on-going topic I address over and over.

Oh well.

This week, I've been watching the Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan The National Parks: America’s Best Idea PBS series that came out last year. I'd not seen most of the series yet, and people comment about it when they visit our parks, so I thought I needed to watch the series in its entirety.

I'm not going to comment on quality, breadth of content, etc. That's up to each person's point of view. But I do like history a bit and I think the photography has been beautiful. :)

The thing that - almost unknowingly - hits me is that this series has the ability to grip emotions if you let it. Or if you are moved by these great parks as I am. Several influential early park proponents went into the moutains for their health. They talked and wrote of spiritual experiences they had.

I can identify with them. And I'm thankful that there were people willing to set aside places for breathing mountain air, for renewal, for escaping the 'everyday' world.

Watching this series, too, I find myself wanting to be more of an outspoken advocate. I feel compelled to act. To do more.

“National parks embody an idea as uniquely American as the Declaration of Independence and just as radical: that the most magnificent and sacred places in our land belong not to royalty or the rich but to everyone- and for all time,” said Burns. “While making this series, we discovered more than stories of the most dramatic landscapes on earth. We discovered stories of remarkable people from every conceivable background. What they had in common was a passion to save some precious portion of the land they loved so that those of us who followed might have the same chance to fall in love with that place. Without them, parks would not exist.”

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