“What the president has purported to do is outside the scope of his authority,” said Navajo Nation Attorney General Ethel Branch. “We think the law is clear.”

Specifically, opponents of the land reduction regard the changes as a threat to environmental conservation and a gross encroachment on a space that Indigenous peoples consider sacred. Meanwhile, the president appeared to suggest that the monuments impeded public access when he addressed a crowd in Salt Lake City.

“Public lands will once again be for public use because we know that people who are free to use their land and enjoy their land are the people most determined to conserve their land,” he said.

However, environmental justice activist and director of HBCU Green Fund Felicia Davis explains to Playboy that designating national monuments as protected lands serves everyone. Read the full article here.