The Land: The Spoilers

About 99 million vacationers will visit the 201 U.S. national parks this year. They will bring with them a love of nature and a sense of wonder at the beauty that has been preserved against the onrush of progress. They will also bring with them thousands of cans of spray paint and the lust to desecrate.

The aerosol paint can is science's contribution to the ancient art of public defacement, and the vacant-minded or vicious are taking to it in ever-increasing numbers—gleefully spraying their names, initials, class numerals and favorite biological functions over national monuments and natural...

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