Having worked in the forest products industry, I’ve seen benevolence and appreciation for conservation from its managers and landowners. I had hoped the Maine Forest Products Council had this vision of balance, but they do not.

Good economic health and good stewardship of the earth are not unlike caring for our own physical health; moderation and balance are key. There is not one superfood that sustains us, not one pill that cures all.

This national monument is a healthy balance: beautiful land nested in three watersheds; with panorama that perfectly exemplifies interior Maine, culturally and historically rich, preserved, shared and managed in iconic national monument designation – most certainly desirable to those who live in concrete jungles and to those who live here.

This is an economic opportunity that doesn’t cure all of our ills, but enables our businesses, service organizations, taxpayers and children to get a foothold and build on it. We are obliged as Mainers to navigate our economic and ecological health – to maintain the balance.

Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King should be leading the support for the Maine Woods National Monument. Instead, they wait on the fence for fair weather to come. Rep. Bruce Poliquin visited the region and for hours heard many passionate, viable and considerate reasons for its fruition – he smiled and ignored them all.

When I told a wise friend/historian that the Republican Party’s platform includes trying to limit presidential authority to designate national monuments, he said, “Teddy Roosevelt would be appalled.” I know I am.

Georgia Manzo

citizen of the Katahdin region