BLM (Bureau of Land Management/Department of Interior)
One of the ten bureaus within the U.S. Department of Interior, the BLM has become a source of acute conflict surrounding differences in how to manage federal land and wilderness areas, most significantly in the West.
For some the BLM represents responsible stewardship and a needed and crucial external safeguard to protect natural resources from those who may otherwise use (or abuse) them for their own interests. For others, the BLM represents unnecessary and intrusive meddling in local land use, which is best left to state and county governments.
The 2014 and 2016 face-offs between Cliven and Ammon Bundy (and allies) and the BLM, over grazing rules for federal land, put this controversy in the headlines. Current anger about the BLM has a long history rooted in disputes over Western federal lands going back over 100 years.
QUESTIONS TO PLAY WITH:
- For you, who are the Heroes and Villains in this story? Why?
- How would you describe the interests and rights at play here?
- Do you see a larger public interest in this controversy?