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Speaking at a recent scientific forum as part of the three-day exercises dedicating the Benjamin Franklin memorial of the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Merritt L. Fernald, Fisher Professor of Natural History and Director of the Gray Herbarium, branded the "misguided and enthusiastic young men" of he CCC as destroyers of the "natural equilibrium of nature."
"So long as man has the passion to alter the perfectly balanced conditions of life which nature, through countless ages, has developed," Fernald warned, "the rare and retiring plant or animal has no more chance of survival than has the human fugitive aristocrat in the dictator-ruled countries which are so upsetting to lovers of human liberty."
The building of artificial ponds, roads, artificial bridges and artificial beaches and the planting of introduced trees and shrubs is not conservation," claimed Fernald, "for it upsets the natural equilibrium which had become established long before man, proud of a supposed resemblance to God, came to ruin it."
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