Catherine Houdek: Moto-use on public lands unacceptable |

Catherine Houdek: Moto-use on public lands unacceptable

Catherine Houdek
Dillon, CO Colorado

While perusing the Opinion page, the header “Give off-road riders a chance” caught my eye. My gut response was, No, never! Even after reading a well-written, rational plea for consideration of responsible use of off-road motor vehicles, I still say never.

I believe in “live and let live” and respecting individual rights, but only when those rights don’t impinge on another’s. Smoking is the perfect example. While I empathize with all those smokers whose right to smoke has been greatly curtailed, we others have our own right not to be subjected to secondhand smoke and its negative effects.

I feel the same way about off-road vehicles. In particular, I live not too far from the referenced Tenderfoot Mountain and I, too, like to use this public land. Only my use is on foot, emitting no carbon monoxide or particulate or noise pollution. With minimal impact on the terrain, no impact on the environment, and any noxious odor I may emit comes only after a particularly hard workout.

To Ms. Jeche’s assertion that she is being “squeezed out of ‘our’ public lands,” I would suggest that the right to use public lands is predicated on use that doesn’t step on the rights of much of the public. And finally, it’s not her being squeezed out ” it’s her off-road vehicle. In my view, even responsible use of ATVs, ORVs, OHVs ” whatever acronym you give them ” is unacceptable recreational use of public land.

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