Dear Editor,

I was inspired to see that no one had a good thing to say about the oil/tar sands in the Book Cliffs in your recent survey. I am hoping this means that the word is getting out that this is not an effective way to obtain oil and it is destructive to the environment. It is time for the oil companies to wake up, diversify, and find other solutions. WE CAN DO THIS!

My Dad was a member of the Greatest Generation. No, he was not one of Doolittle’s Raiders or a Tuskegee Airman but he was a hero to me. My Dad left the family farm in Carter Camp, PA to travel to the Caterpillar Tractor School in the Peoria, Illinois for training. He went on to California where he was put on a ship which zigzagged across the Pacific. My Dad was with the 882nd Airborne Engineers and his unit was dropped on an island in the Pacific to build an airport so the airplanes could land. My Dad battled seasickness, airsickness, homesickness, and gunfire to make the world a better place.

On my own journey to learn about the tar/oil sands I have overheard conversations that are shocking to me. Did you know there are young people in Moab who are willing to lie down in front of bulldozers to save Utah from the oil/tar sands?

I understand jobs are the No. 1 reason folks are willing to accept strip mining in Utah. Jobs are important but this is not the kind of jobs we need. I was unemployed for five months myself and it was one of the worst times in my life. Not working was never an option in my family. My Dad opened his own business after WWII and worked seven days a week. We kids all worked from a young age.

This week I hiked to Funnel Arch (aka Cable Arch) on Kane Creek Rd. The hiking group decided they would proceed to the top of the domes via the cable. Three years ago, I would not have been able to do this. But, with encouragement from the group, I made it to the top. We hiked around on top for awhile and then it was time to come back down. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever done. I had to reach down to my toes to find the courage to get back down the cable.

Today, I am very thankful to have a new job after filling out job application after job application. Every application asks whether I have ever been convicted of a crime, a felony, a misdemeanor. When the time comes for my generation, I wonder if I will be able to risk losing my job and going to jail to stand up for what I believe in and save this land. Will I have the courage to lie down in front of a bulldozer to save our planet? Can I ever be a hero like my Dad?

Barb Crossan, Moab