Credit Greg Turner/Kentucky Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Resources
Attitudes about how best to protect Colorado bats from the spread of a deadly fungus is sparking debate and litigation. On Wednesday, the nonprofit Center for Biological Diversity filed a lawsuit against the Bureau of Land Management. The issue stems from permits the agency plans to issue to recreational cavers during a national convention later this month in Glenwood Springs.
In 2005 I wrote a review of George R. R. Martin's novel, A Feast for Crows, in which I called him "the American Tolkien." That phrase has stuck to him, which is what I meant it to do. I think Martin's fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire is the great epic of our era. It's an epic for a more profane, more sardonic, more ambivalent age than the one Tolkien lived in. Tolkien was a veteran of the Somme, and wrote during Word War II, when it really seemed like the fate of civilization was hanging in the balance. Now we can't even agree on what civilization is.