RED ROCK TESTIMONY

#RedRockTestimony gathers passionate words from three generations of writers who treasure Utah’s public lands. First printed as a limited edition, art-as-advocacy chapbook, Red Rock Testimony was delivered to Obama Administration officials and every member of Congress in June 2016, as decision-makers deliberated between a destructive public lands bill and a national monument proposed by the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition. On December 28, 2016, President Obama established Bears Ears National Monument, and in June 2017, this historic collection was expanded and published as a trade book, Red Rock Stories, in celebration of protecting exquisite and sacred landscapes. After Trump drastically shrank the Bears Ears National Monument, this chapbook became a book of defense.
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 Washington, D.C. 

Red Rock Testimony conveys the spiritual, cultural, and scientific values of Utah’s canyon country through the essays and poems of 34 passionate and heartfelt writers whose births span seven decades. From widely published elders to scholar/scientists to former elected officials to Native leaders to Millennial activists, these writers explore the fierce beauty and the dangers to ecological and archaeological integrity in America’s redrock wilderness. This chorus of storytellers will move you with their emotional, quirky, knowledgeable testimony. They capture the healing power of this land.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Charles Wilkinson

Introduction: “…the authenticity, passion, and rightness of protecting Bears Ears.”

Simon Ortiz  

RIGHT OF WAY: “And so you tell stories…”

Kevin T. Jones   

THE MAN WITH A HEART OF STONE: “Fremont people were farmers, builders, dreamers, and thinkers.”

Jana Richman 

THE LAND OF NO USE: “Our external geography informs our internal geography.”

David Gessner

 THE FREEDOM OF RESTRAINT: “The myths of western land are myths of freedom.”

Karen Shepherd  

THE ONLY WAY FORWARD: “If Bears Ears is to be saved, President Obama must save it.”

Regina Lopez-Whiteskunk 
IT’S TIME TO HEAL BEARS EARS: “…personal healing like nothing else can be.”

Lauret Savoy 
ON COMPROMISED GROUND: “Mutual concession requires that we do more. It requires respect.”

Christopher Cokinos
STONE THAT LEAPS: “This place. Lifted, cracked and stilled.”

Kathleen Dean Moore
WHAT SHALL WE GIVE THE CHILDREN?: “Let us give the children wonderment, radical amazement…”

Jen Jackson Quintano 
MEMORY: “I want to give it all to my daughter, wrapped in balsamroot leaves.”

Jim Enote 
A PLACE FOR MEDIATION: “…indigenous knowledge will be the keystone of collaboration.”

Alastair Lee Bitsoi 
SHASH JAA’ FOLLOWS WHEREVER I GO: “I never thought I would write about Bears Ears in my Brooklyn apartment…”

 

Juan Palma 
THE WILDNESS IN NATURE BINDS US TO THE PAST AND THE FUTURE:
“…a place I come to re-connect with my Hispanic heritage.”

 

Shonto Begay 
THE VIEW FROM THE MESA: “…the place that harbored the ancient gods and animal beings.”

 

Terry Tempest Williams

A GESTURE OF PEACE:

“It is time for a monumental idea.”

Mary Ellen Hannibal 
THE UR-BEAR: “…a gigantic bear embedded in the geography is more than symbolic.”
Mary Sojourner 
BEAR’S EARS: “Meet me in Mexican Hat. I’ve got a surprise for you.”

Amy Irvine 
SEEING RED: “Looking at the horizon was like looking through a telescope at Mars.”

Thomas Lowe Fleischner 
THE GRACE OF WILDNESS: “In all my years as a naturalist, I’ve never had an encounter like this.”

David Lee 
PRELUDE: “Moses did not go to an oil well derrick to receive the Law…”

George Handley 
FAITH AND THE LAND: “Our beliefs might differ, but our values harmonize.”

Brooke Williams 
LEASE UTU91481: “Leasing this land was not part of our plan.”

Anne Terashima
WE (HEART) WILDERNESS: “Millennials need what this wilderness brings.”

Jacqueline Keeler 
IT IS THE LAND THAT TELLS THE STORY: “My Navajo grandfather pulled out his wire cutters and cut the fence.”

Michelle Nijhuis 
WHAT THE TORTOISE TAUGHT ME: “Locals prefer to speak for themselves.”

Chip Ward 
WHOLE AND HOLY: “We act as if there is no upstream, no downstream.”

Ann Whittaker
WHEN THE DESERT MORNING RISES: “I take my questions, alone, to the redrock canyons.”

Gary Paul Nabhan
UP BETWEEN THE BEARS EARS: “That place triggered my metamorphosis that still informs my life.”

Bruce Babbitt 
IT’S TIME TO ACT: “The best way to defend the Antiquities Act is for the President to use it.”

Mark Udall 
I AM A SON OF THE COLORADO PLATEAU: “I have walked in the wildest, most remote terrain in the Lower 48.”

Stephen Trimble 
WE COME OUT DANCING TOGETHER: “To respond to the wounds in this land, we must first see them.”

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