This was a great article posted in Orion Magazine honoring the 50th anniversary of both the Wilderness Act and the Civil Rights Act - http://www.orionmagazine.org/index.php/articles/article/8275
Segregating wilderness from people creates permission to deforest and devalue the landscape where people are allowed to “remain” while falsely defining the remote landscape as “pristine.” Desegregating the wilderness requires not only the laws that forbid discrimination but also the reintegration of nearby wilderness where people live.
Now largely white organizations and agencies are grappling with the dilemma of a segregated wilderness by working feverishly to get urban people out to remote places—because people will not protect what they have not enjoyed. But what if wilderness zigzagged through areas where urban people live? Then accessing the wilderness in our daily lives could be more tangible than wild shadows cast by memory.
Deb Kleinman, MPH
Model Forest Policy Program