Article by Doug Woodward
written for the Sept/Oct 2019 issue of American Whitewater
Whitewater History: Jimmy Carter — A Wild River Legacy
Imagine… a leader capable of understanding how the natural world sustains both our physical and emotional selves, not to mention his having a passion for human rights and healing the differences between disparate groups of people. Now picture that leader as the President of the United States. Improbable? Yes. Impossible? No.
It is safe to say that no president since Teddy Roosevelt has embraced the importance of protecting unique natural areas to the extent that Jimmy Carter has. Even Roosevelt was not presented with the same great opportunities to protect wild country as Carter.
Growing up with the freedom—once his chores were done—to fish and wade nearby Choctahatchee Creek as a boy likely nourished the seed that later matured into a warrior against those who would trade the natural world for a few quick dollars. Very few presidents-to-be, I suspect, have brought live baby alligators and snapping turtles back to their home following a foray into the swamp…