Monday, April 23, 2012

Romney Declares War on National Parks

Mitt Romney
Presidential candidate, Mitt Romney has announced plans to close and/or reduce funding of our national parks.  This action is not surprising as politicians often target education and national resources as part of campaigns to cut government spending.  They attempt to find areas that we think are important in the hope that we will agree to cuts in other areas to save funding in more visible items.  By attacking our national parks, Romney scores a double hit on education and our environment. 

Many national parks are dedicated to the preservation of battlefields where Americans fought for liberty and democracy.  Such sites include Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Mexican American War, and the Civil War. Any attempt to close these places that honor those that made the ultimate sacrifice is an insult to all Americans who have fought to defend our country.

Lincoln's Gettysburg Address
Many of these places are under threat from developers and those who put profit ahead of preservation.  Now these national treasures face a new concern from candidate Romney who would close and/or privatize these special locations.  Maybe Romney will increase the fees so much that only a few, privileged wealthy people will be able to visit them.  This would be in keeping with the rest of his proposed cuts that target poor and disadvantaged Americans.  Perhaps, he will sell the parks to some Chinese company who will move their contents to Beijing.  Want to see the Liberty Bell?  It's in a museum in Hong Kong.  What about all those  memorials at Vicksburg and Gettysburg.  Sorry you'll have to go the Shanghai Museum of the American Civil War to see them.  Seems like another option to a businessman who thinks outsourcing American jobs helps the economy.  My sarcasm has its roots in the skillful dismantling of American industry leading to the destruction of the American worker and the corresponding rise in the Chinese economy. 

President Teddy Roosevelt
Romney may be a Republican but he bears no resemblance to truly great Republicans Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Reagan.

I believe that our national parks should be guarded as strongly as we guard our freedom.  If the parks need money, increase the fees to visit them. Don't close them down.  Any real American should defend our parks and work to make them part of the legacy we give to our children and grandchildren. 

As the National Park Service website boasts, the service cares for the environment, preserving history, revitalizing communities and inviting stewardship.   Writer and historian Wallace Stegner called national parks "the best idea we ever had. Absolutely American, absolutely democratic, they reflect us at our best rather than our worst."

If our national parks are the best idea, Romney's plans are the worst. 

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