Changing names in Yosemite National Park makes me feel sad and betrayed. In the scheme of things, with all the more crucial issues in life, this is not huge – but it’s meaningful to me. People, places, monuments, towns, etc., have names that reflect their history. Names are identifiers. These in Yosemite are historical, some are Native American names.
The National Park Service mission statement says that “the Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation.” The responsibility of the NPS is to “preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources” of Yosemite, as the mission statement also reads.
Don’t disregard my opinion – it is as valid as any of the millions of people who have loved Yosemite for generations. Don’t keep the names because they are meaningful and beloved, but keep the names because they mean something by themselves. They are full of history – of people and traditions.
Smart minds can fix the problem. Put your corporate heads and hearts together and figure out how to move on without changing the names.
Cheryl J. Silva, Fresno