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IT'S TIME TO TAKE BACK OUR PUBLIC LANDS

In the debate about off highway vehicle trails on public lands, motorized recreationalists have loudly claimed their “access rights” to our public lands. Our public lands and wildlife are the domain of the public. Our right to access them for use and enjoyment are uniquely American but a “right” to use is not a “right to abuse.” We must remember that our rights to access public lands are “temporary rights” not “property rights.” For over 50 years I have been an enthusiastic deer hunter, grouse hunter and user of our public lands and waterways. For those citizens who cannot afford land, they still have the opportunity to take their kids camping in a wild setting or a father can take his son into the Northwoods deer hunting whereas, without these public lands, he couldn’t. Many decades ago, Minnesota established a vast state forest system of 4.5 million acres. At the same time, Minnesota counties were given administration of another vast network of lands known as “county administered lan

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