Whether your preferred analogy is “foxes guarding the henhouse” or “wolves guarding the sheep,” both of these imply that it is unwise to assign a job to someone who will then be in a position to exploit it for his or her own desires. And these “old sayings” date back to at least the Roman times.

Yet recently our President nominated a woman to head the Council on Environmental Quality, the top environmental job in the White House, who has compared “people who believe that carbon pollution is causing climate change” to pagans and communists. And President Trump also nominated a former lobbyist for Wheeler Energy, a major coal company, and a long-time staff member of Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe, to be second-in-command to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. As you may recall, Senator Inhofe has referred to human-caused global warming as the “greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people” and even tossed a snowball in the Senate Chamber to “prove” that global warming was false.

Interestingly, during the confirmation hearings it came up that the CEO of that coal company recently presented a three-page document to Administrator Pruitt, which outlines some plans to essentially “defang” the agency. And indeed, claims were made by that CEO that some of those plans have already been implemented. That’s great.

So, if those individuals are confirmed, our country’s natural environment will be overseen by individuals who obviously show little if any regard for nature.

Throughout much of human history thoughtful individuals recognized the necessity of preventing “foxes” and “wolves” from guarding “hens” and “sheep.” Today therefore, it is clear that our elected representatives must prevent exploitative individuals from “protecting” what is unquestionably our most precious asset. Although hens and sheep may be replaced if eaten, our natural environment is irreplaceable.

– Mike Kamandulis, Kersey

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