Indigenous Rights, Land Development, and National Parks

The link above details a contentious plan to build a mall essentially on the east rim of the Grand Canyon on Navajo land. It does a nice job of providing a voice to all of the stakeholders: Navajo opposition, Navajo proponents, environmentalists, developers, National Park employees, and Euroamerican local residents. This is a complex issue involving indigenous sovereignty and our conceptualization of conservation. Is the point of the National Park System to make these protected places accessible to all or to preserve them against overuse by people? Do we value capitalism above environmentalism as a society? Do the wishes of local residents outweigh national conservation policy? Let me know what you think.


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