Letter to the Editor (June 18)

Dear Editor:

I attended Congressman Canseco’s last Town Hall Meeting in Alpine. I asked him about HR1505, the National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act, an euphemistic name for the rape and pillage of our Nation’s National Parks within 100 miles of our country’s borders; this includes Big Bend NationalPark. He stood before me and stated categorically that this bill had been voted upon months ago and that he voted for it.

I advised that my check of the internet the day before indicated this bill was still pending. He said I was wrong and he was correct. I then asked him if he had ever visited Big Bend National Park and he refused to answer. I told him that I had called the park superintendent  the day before and that he said Congressman Canseco had never visited the park while a congressman.

He still refused to answer until [John Waters of the Big Bend Gazette, in attendance] insisted that he answer my question. The congressman shook his head in such a way that it could not taken as a positive response.

I explained to the Congressman that Brewster County and Alpine relied heavily upon tourism for our economy and that Big Bend NP was the primary driver of this tourist economy. I continued to inform him that this HR 1505 would allow the Secretary of Homeland Security to waive all laws intended to preserve our national parks from infringement by allowing them to build roads, infrastructure, outposts, etc., and under which the Secretary of the Interior nor the Park could raise any objections to such infringements.

The Congressman brought up Organ Pipe National Park [in southern Arizona, on the border with Mexico]. I informed him that it had been trashed by the Border Patrol and the Congressman was voting for the potential  trashing of our Big Bend National Park.  He was unmoved.

Following this town hall meeting, I spoke with someone who was in attendance at dinner with the congressman, who said that Canseco categorically stated that he would never work with the Democrats nor ever compromise with them.

I knew he was far to the right on the political spectrum, but now I realize that he is a fanatic, not worthy of his office. The man stood before an audience of his constitutes and blatantly lied. Congressman Canseco no longer deserves our trust or support.

Brian Shugart

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