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In his recent column lamenting the loss of green areas in Los Alamos, Chick Keller urges us not to blame firefighters for destroying a canyon after fingering those same firefighters for setting the back burns that blackened it. Sadly, Keller’s apparent bitterness over the present state of Valle Canyon betrays an insincerity of sentiment toward the grim but necessary work of firefighters engaged in steering an inferno away from the heart of our community.
If we are to blame anyone for the continuing loss of green space here and elsewhere, we should blame ourselves. For the sake of sincerity, blame the recent trend of mega-fires on a culture that values convenience over conservation. Blame it on a culture here and elsewhere that insists on creating twice-daily streams of one-passenger vehicles to work and back home again, on a culture that values our bus system more as a summer babysitting service and less as a transportation option. Blame those who are too stubborn to admit that they are witnessing changes to the climate during their short lifespans, or those who have convinced themselves that merely owning a Prius is enough to address those changes.
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