Public Trust Image

Public Trust

By Sabina Dana Plasse | September 26, 2020

In the West, public lands are used for grazing, and ranchers need the space to raise cattle, sheep, and other herds of animals to make a living. The film touches on this area, but it’s a subject that could use a bit more breadth as the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands are also under fire to be sold, and that could make huge changes to not only recreation and traveling but our food systems.

Public Trust is about fighting for public lands for future generations. As Americans, we may or may not know that the use of our public lands hangs in the balance in the very near future. Regardless if people care or not care about ancestry or archeological sites, which they should because knowing one’s history and being able to see it has boundless indelible effects. In my life, I have commonly referred to the Lascaux Caves in France, which I learned about in my freshman year of college Art History 101 course, because they launched my own education to life-long love art and part of a career that has me writing this very review.

“…to say about a vast majority of lands that are the fabric in the world in which we live.”

As Americans, we often all feel a right to land, whether we own, rent, or visit it. The global pandemic has been an incredible testament to how people ventured to public lands because of restricted travel and recreation. If you live in the West or near a national park, you more than likely saw that U.S. parks and monuments that were visited by overwhelming crowds this summer. Camping was off the charts, not to mention the rise in RVs, sprinter vans, and the like. You can camp, recreate, visit, and become enlightened for free or for little cost in designated public land areas all over the U.S., including Alaska. We take care of animals and species by allowing them to live freely and allow nature to take its course. Isn’t this global pandemic a sign of how close we are getting? Public lands have never seen the traffic and use as they did in the summer of 2020. This may all change in 2021.

The informed subjects and documents revealed in Public Trust should heighten your curiosity to think again, look, and listen to what educated, studied men and women have to say about a vast majority of lands that are the fabric in the world in which we live. As a person who moved their life to a rural setting in the West more than a decade ago, I can attest that this documentary sheds some important pieces of understanding of the decisions that are occurring right now on how the future of land will exist in the U.S. In a time of a global pandemic, an extremely divided nation, and an unsettling presidential election, let a film like Public Trust educate you.

Public Trust (2020)

Directed: David Byars


Starring: Hal Herring, etc.

Movie score: 10/10

Public Trust Image

"…about fighting for public lands for future generations."

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