I have a theory. Call it the Yellowstone Peace Protocol, or YPP for short.
It’s simple: take people from all over the world who can’t agree on anything or are fighting over an age-old conflict. Place them together in a beautiful landscape populated with majestic animals in a sort of wildlife pilgrimage. Humans of all colors, shapes, nationalities and languages, all inspired by nature. Now make sure the ratio of people to binoculars and spotting scopes is skewed. Say, 20 people for every five pairs of binoculars and two spotting scopes.
Now stand back. I don’t care if there is a staunch Republican next to a Democrat, or a Palestinian next to a Jew, or a Michigan State fan next to an Ohio State alumnus (am I pushing it with that one?). They’re going to start talking about wolves, bison and bears, not some other age-old conflict. Next thing you know, they’re sharing the spotting scopes and binoculars and sharing cold brews from a cooler. Agendas and nationalities melt away in the face of the YPP and all you’re left with is the fact that all of us are human.
French, Czech, Dutch, British, Texan, New Joy-sey, or Aussie. Talking to a fellow animal watcher in a National Park for the first time, you never know what their accent will be, so it would be a level playing ground to get started. With a thread weaving us all together, our eyes and intention are trained on the mama grizzly bear and her cubs bouncing in the tall grass, not the differences that “separate” us.
I think this would trump the effectiveness of any UN meeting or mediation. Find a calming common ground and resolution lies just beyond that boundary. A clean, easy solution! Leaders of the World, feel free to borrow this anytime you’d like.
P.S. Yellowstone and Grand Teton are just amazing. We can’t wait to get back there. Here are a fair number of other pictures that I haven’t had a chance to share. Plus a few fun ones from Colorado and Montana to get these shots out once and for all!