You can close a park, but … seriously?

(Image: Brian Skoloff/ Associated Press)

22 thoughts on “You can close a park, but … seriously?

  1. With all due respect, PT, the real meaning of this will come clear right after the first tourist falls to her death because a park Ranger wasn’t there to prevent it.

    1. Careless and/or stupid people will find ways to hurt or kill themselves whether a ranger is around or not. It happens all the time. The assumption in the wild is always “Enter at your own risk.” Besides, the parks belong to the public, not to the US government. It has no right to keep us out.

      I found this particular sign humorous simply because the first mental image I had was of government employees trying to physically close this giant gash in the earth like surgeons trying to close a wound. Ridiculous and impossible. Human beings cannot “close” the Grand Canyon.

      1. Sure, PT, I totally get that. I just wanted to not lose sight of the very important role filled by the people in the park service. It’s similar to the role played by street cleaners, trash men and police. Problems aren’t apparent until, well, until they are.

      2. Agreed. Too many people seem to think of park service employees as just those guys building barricades at the DC memorials. That’s a cushy and thankless job compared the the folks who, for example, maintain and patrol a mountainous, wilderness park covering hundreds of square miles (approx. 400 sq miles in the case of RMNP). Wildlife management, fire mitigation, trail building and maintenance, rescues, law enforcement, public information and education, and even sanitation. It’s a tough, critically important job and they do it because they love the park. If I lived in Estes Park, I’d be trying to get a job with the park service, or at least volunteering (public information, not trail building!).

  2. Totally agree, Ms Pied. The truth of the matter though will be revealed when someone attempts to gain entrance to one of the so-called “closed” open air spaces… Someone who is supposed to be a victim of the government “shutdown” will be there to arrest them. I notice that the as yet unfunded ACA implementation is proceeding along as if the shutdown was a political figment.

    1. Well, supposedly only “non-essential” services have been shut down, leaving some 80% still operating. Apparently, protecting public places from the public and ACA implementation are considered essential by some people.

  3. We all like to hate Congress these days, but unfortunately it’s more complicated than that. I was struck by some statistics in a newspaper column by a blogging friend of mine, Herb Van Fleet, a brainy, disciplined thinker and careful researcher. He said,

    ” . . . during the 2012 election, 90 percent of House members and 91 percent of senators who sought reelection won. Yet the approval rating for Congress averaged 15 percent for 2012. More interesting, however, is a Gallup poll earlier this year that found that 62 percent of voters approved of the job their particular representative was doing but only 35 percent could name him or her.”

    Congress has been reflecting their constituencies, selfish, provincial and short-sighted. I wish I knew what to do about it. Blogging and writing in the paper is a start, but so far, it isn’t working.

    1. I’ve heard this often — people blame everyone but their own representatives. Colorado’s congressional delegation is divided and as far as I know, only the Dems were working to get Rocky Mountain National Park reopened, for example. Sad when reps from the same state can’t even pull together for their own state. It’s so bad here, as you’ve probably heard, that some of our counties want to split off and form a new state.

      I don’t know what to do about it either. I’ve long advocated term limits but have no idea how to get that written into law when the lawmakers are in charge of this mess.

    2. I wonder, when Lincoln said “And that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth,” do you think the “people” he was talking about were anything like the “people” we have today? 🙄

    1. Ridiculous, isn’t it, that the guards and surveillance necessary to keep people out are essential, but the employees necessary to keep the parks open are “non-essential.”

... and that's my two cents