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HomeColumns, Opinions & Misc.Camp Grayling proposal is unacceptable

Camp Grayling proposal is unacceptable

Editor’s note: The public comment period for the proposed expansion of Camp Grayling ends Feb. 8. To submit a comment email DNR-Camp-Grayling@Michigan.gov by Feb. 8.

To the editor:

On behalf of tens of thousands of concerned citizens, local units of government, and conservation groups, I appreciate (everyone’s) interest in the Michigan Department of Natural Resources public comment period related to the Camp Grayling expansion proposal.  Recently interim Director of the DNR, Shannon Lott, has suggested that a compromise for less land than originally requested by the National Guard may be considered.  That is not acceptable.  The opposition is based on principle, not volume.

Unfortunately, many Michigan citizens are not aware of or fully informed of the tenets or consequences of this proposal, particularly those in southern Michigan.  This proposal affects the environment and accessibility of public land for all Michigan residents and northern Michigan outdoor enthusiasts, not just those living adjacent to the lands impacted by the proposal.

This proposal is about much more than obvious environmental concerns.  As outlined in the Michigan Department of Military and Veteran Affairs strategic plan from October, 2021, this proposal is designed to promote the use of our public lands by defense contractors to test and evaluate emerging military technology.  Furthermore, it opens the door to expanded use by active duty military organizations and foreign military units training on our public land with an exponential increase in year around training and airspace activity.  Right in the middle of the world’s largest fresh water supply and in an area of our state’s most pristine wilderness.

I encourage you to visit www.230isenough.com to review critical information related to this proposal.  Likewise, request membership to the Camp Grayling Expansion facebook page for a list of relevant articles, press releases, and community engagement.  To date, every local body of government affected by the proposal has produced a resolution in opposition to the expansion.  Once you have reviewed these resources, compare its content to the Michigan Department of Military and Veteran Affairs Strategic Plan dated October, 2021 for insight into the military’s true intent of this expansion proposal.  The strategic plan is available by searching www.michigan.gov/DMVA.

For a comprehensive review of how we got here, please see Crawford County resident Martha Duby’s YouTube video titled “Camp Grayling Expansion + Airspace Expansion = Militarization of Michigan.”  Though somewhat lengthy, the video provides a timeline and comprehensive review of the land and airspace expansion requested by the National Guard.

Many of those in opposition are military veterans and current servicemembers, some of whom previously worked at Camp Grayling.  The community surrounding Camp Grayling is proud of our military and fully supports its requirements for training.  Unfortunately, the National Guard has failed to provide any legitimate, documented need for this expansion and has eroded the public’s trust.  The National Guard has gone so far as to publicly question the patriotism of those in opposition to this land grab.

I remain hopeful that you will become more informed about this proposal and analyze it critically.  More importantly, I humbly request the assistance of your agency’s influence and reach to tell the rest of the story for the benefit of all outdoors enthusiasts in Michigan.  Lastly, I request that you contact your elected representatives and the Director of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to register your opposition to this unnecessary and damaging proposal.


Jason Teddy


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