In my thinking and definition, the term "public lands" encompasses any land, publicly owned, where the management of the land includes at least some component of protecting or restoring a natural condition. With state and national parks protection and restoration are of the highest order. With US National Forest and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands, "multiple-use management" recognizes a diversity of uses like recreation and environmental protection as well as resource development like mining, timber, grazing, oil, gas, and solar "farms". All these competing interests must be managed somehow.  I'm OK with the multiple use concept although I sure wouldn't want to be the manager! My ideal for such management would be where reasonable people can sit down at the same table and work out their differences but, of course, it rarely works that way. Land management more often looks like an arena full of self-interested gladiators. There are some notable collaborative exceptions like the High Desert Partnership in eastern Oregon (not all parties like the collaborative approach, witness the armed takeover of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge, a place that was the centerpiece of the successes of the High Desert Partnership for many years). I'm not OK, however, with the constant overt and covert movements to transfer public lands into private hands. 
Most of our public lands were retained by the federal government when western states were granted statehood. Unhappiness with that has continued ever since. Political moves to transfer public lands to the private sector accelerated in the so-called Sagebrush Rebellion of the 1970s and never abated although much of the maneuvering became less visible.
For example, when the Republican Party realized the level of public support for public lands might sway voters in the 2016 elections, the party platform was changed to omit (but not reverse) the statement that public lands were in large part surplus and should be divested to the private sector as their highest use.  In 2017 the House Rules of the 115th Congress were modified to declare public lands slated for future "disposal" to be of no monetary value, thus skirting Federal regulations precluding sale of public property at a loss to the public!
And this is a tip of the iceberg. Those that disagree with keeping the public on public lands work on many fronts, chiefly political but even by armed rebellion, i.e. the Malheur Standoff mentioned above. Religion and the long, deep history of the Mormon Church in the West play a role, i.e. the Bunkerville Standoff over BLM grazing fees which was about a lot more than just grazing fees.  And although they are not alone, Utah politicians stand out for their relentlessness in their privatization priorities.
There is no end in sight. I practice photography for creative and expressive reasons, not to document public land conditions. However, for those not familiar with our public lands, perhaps my photos here will provide at least a sense of what we have to lose. 
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