the shocking film on the privatization of American public lands



a small boat in a body of water: Photograph: Prisma by Dukas Presseagentur GmbH/Alamy Stock Photo


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Prisma by Dukas Presseagentur GmbH/Alamy Stock Photo

Towards the middle of the new film Public Trust, about the continued push by zealous conservatives to privatize ownership of the United States’ federally-managed public lands, the stakes are laid bare: “If you don’t get engaged, you lose,” says Land Tawney, president and CEO of the nonprofit Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. “When you get complacent, things are done to you.”

Tawney is speaking of the 640m acres that are owned by the country’s citizenry. Few things in politics are as quintessentially American as the country’s vast system of public lands. No other nation on earth has this much property that belongs to its people and is intended to be management by the government for the benefit and uplift of all. Yet selling off those lands is still listed as a goal in the Republican party platform, and

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