Recent comments

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    The most offensive people are those who make claims of being offended by symbols of others' religions. Buono has the freedom to look away from anything he finds offensive and should not be allowed to impede on others' freedom of expression in this manner.

  • Reader Participation Survey: Should Hunters Be Used to Manage National Park Wildlife?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I am in favor of well managed hunts to help control population. Also the use of the meat from those animals, if not to feed the hunter's families , then to be given to those who are in need of food. There will always be those who will be poor sportsmen but with proper management , it could be kept to a minimum. I have seen the result of animals who were not controlled and overpopulated their own environment. Starvation and illness is a horrible end. Well managed hunts are an excellent solution to the potential problem of overpopulation and a great way to help supply needed food to those who are in need.

  • What Bird is This?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    this is a Mottled duck, they are often mistaken for mallards or black ducks. It is the least numerous duck in north america

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Please take down the cross, to allow others to place their symbols there invites spaceship memorials from scientology people etc. And that would be silliness. However, leave the native americans to practice their historical ways. They were here before this load of paper pushing was thought up. In place of the cross there can be a flag flown, or a statue of a large eagle flying (as long as the blue birds dont sue). Something to honor the people originally meant to be honored.

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    If we are going to throw a hissy fit over a memorial on federal land, then maybe we should also go and take down every cross at Antietam, Gettysburg, etc. I am an atheist, but in no way does a cross placed as a memorial in an area that was not even federal land at the time offend me.The cross has existed as a symbol long before Jesus' birth. Maybe we should say it's a cross to represent September Equinox =)

    Ranger Holly
    http://web.me.com/hollyberry

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Has everyone forgotten that our forefathers founded this nation to escape religious persecution? I am tired of worrying about whether my worshiping God is offending someone! We are a melting pot of different religious views. Just because I'm not Jewish doesn't mean that I would be offended by a Jewish monument. Come on people, stand up against religious persecution! God is calling on us to stand up for him!

  • Fall and Winter Are Prime Seasons for Camping in These Parks   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Keep in mind that late Fall and Winter are the perfect seasons for backpacking on Cumberland Island National Seashore. Comfortable temps, usually dry and clear skies as the seasons progress, very few bugs, even fewer people on the wilderness trails. Perfect for an extended weekend if you want a nice blend of history, nature, isolation and wildness on the beach.

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=113575672

    For those interested, PBS' News Hour usually has pretty good Supreme Court recaps done by Marsha Coyle (sp?), and NPR's Nina Totenberg does the same for NPR. Keep an eye out.

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    As a practicing Christian, I can understand how someone of a different faith would be upset at seeing that "memorial". The cross as a symbol is offensive to many people, partly because it is a reminder of Jesus' statement that the only way to the Father (God) is through Him, and partly because of the reprehensible behavior of people throughout the centuries claiming to be Christians.
    In a similar manner, I have been offended when hiking the Grand Canyon. Areas of surpassing beauty that I consider to have been created by God have been given names such as Zoroaster Temple, Vishnu Temple, Brahma Temple and many other such names. An argument could be made that Hinduism (and some, but not all, other religions) are being endorsed by the government here.
    The good thing about this argument is that it recognizes the mutually exclusive worldviews of different faiths. This would not be worth discussing if "it doesn't matter what you believe as long as you are sincere". Clearly, Mr. Buono thinks it does matter what you believe. In that, I agree wholeheartedly with him.
    Please keep us posted as this develops.

  • Reader Participation Survey: Should Hunters Be Used to Manage National Park Wildlife?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    If it was my call I would allow the hunting. It could be regulated & limited to chosen areas. They could consult with someone like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation or any state with a successful elk management program to figure out a good game plan. Also I'm sure the NPS could always use the added revenue, that could help the Park in multiple ways. I'm sure anyone could find draw backs, but I believe with a little research any rational person could see the benefits to the elk, park and the taxpayers would be positive. I am against paying of anyone to sharp shoot animals for culling of the herd. -MIKE

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Susan's posting below states, "...it has no architectural value (it is just a couple of tubes painted white.)" As a Christian, I work diligently on not Judging others, lest I be judged by the standards I apply. Therefore, all I will do is sincerely pray for Susan's salvation, Frank Buono's salvation, and that of the American Civil Liberties Union.

    In Jesus' name, Amen.

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    It seems to me that Frank Buono just wanted to grab some of the spotlight for him self! I don't see why a cross put up 65 years ago in memory of fallen fellow soldiers is an issue at all. And for Frank to say that it might not be fair to other groups is about the lamest idea I have ever heard! Life itself is not fair and you will never please everyone! As to Susan's comment that a cross is entirely exclusive of other faiths isn't true at all! While a cross is a Christian symbol it is also a symbol to mark a grave! Do you ever pass a cross on the side of the road where someone has dies and think "Oh, they were a Christian" no you think "Oh, someone died there! Personally I think people need to find something better to do with their time and leave the memorial alone!!!

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Susan beat me to hitting the post button...

    The simple white cross isn't just a simple tribute to veterans of WW1:

    The lawsuit came about after NPS refused to allow Jewish or Buddhist symbols to be erected alongside the cross. As long as the NPS would allow other ministries in the parks, the Christian Ministry isn't favoritism of one religion over others.

    Easter sunrise services have been held there for decades. I've never seen an Easter sunrise service at my local cemetery, nor do I think they happen at Arlington. The sunrise services are held there because the cross is a religious symbol, not a tribute to veterans.

    Several historical parks have chapels in them that are part of the interpretation of the site. Just like the F.L.W. synagogue, they have historic & cultural significance.

  • Tracing The Postage Stamp-Sized History of the National Park System   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Dawn,
    You could go to your local library or book store and check the values of your stamps in a Scotts Stamp Catalog. Keep in mind that the catalog value is for very fine condition and well centered, plus most dealers would only pay a small percentage of the value. Most US 19th century stamps are readily available for purchase in mint and used conditions.

    Very nice article. I enjoy the National Park series of stamps both past and present.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 14: You Might Know What This Is, But Where is It?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Well, it's definitely not a "living" coral, but its definitely stood the test of time in its current location!

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    There are marked differences between the Mojave cross case and the first example you cited. First, the cross was put up by an individual, without evaluation, discussion or permit. Unlike the Wright synagogue, it has no architectural value (it is just a couple of tubes painted white.)

    Another point you didn't address is that a Buddhist group requested permission to place a shrine in the same vicinity and was turned down.

    Also, as a "memorial" to war veterans, the cross is entirely exclusive of other faiths. If you doubt this, imagine a large star of David in its spot. Would you feel that was an appropriate tribute to your Baptist Uncle Ernie who died in WWII?

  • Annual Elk Hunt Scheduled to Begin in Grand Teton National Park Oct 10   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Why must it always come down to bashing hunters? The vast majority of hunters are true conservationists. Remember, it was the most active presidential hunter, Teddy Rooselvelt, that set aside many of the lands we all enjoy today. Most hunter-based groups are based upon his ideals and fair chase principals (Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Ducks Unlimited). Just like any other race/group of people, there are good and bad.

    A "happy hunt" is one where I see animals. I spent 11 days chasing elk here in Colorado last month, but never did get presented with an ethical shot with my bow. I was solo hunting in a wilderness area, covering ground that most people on this blog wouldn't even think of hiking (think 2,000 vertical feet before sunrise). The highlight of my hunt was a sunset on the Elk Mtns with a blizzard moving in and a streak of sunlight breakling through on a band of sandstone. Sorry if this doesn't fit your view of a hunter. If you have never been on a hunt, or been hunting, then don't speak about what you have no knowledge of.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 14: You Might Know What This Is, But Where is It?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Gift shop? I don't think it looks healthy.

  • Supreme Court Hears Arguments Over Cross at Mojave National Preserve   5 years 27 weeks ago

    And there are all those depictions of Madame Pele at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

  • What Bird is This?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Doc if you look close at the "long legs" you see its just the reflection off the water. The midpoint of the legs in the photo are were they go into the surface of the water; or maybe its a two pairs of Siamese Ducks connected at the ankles. Heheheh. As to the status of there Nationality I think I see a visa, so they might be just legal tourist ducks.

    Just busting your balls, not trying to out sharp shoot a Jar Head Doc but (I guess I am) that's what I do when I'm not overseas in the sand box working together with them. My Family is pretty well diversified with Army, Navy, and Marines. I being Army, love to mix it up with the Marines with good natured rivalry and ball busting, the Navy are guys are usually way to easy to mess with. -MIKE

    Local 7.62
    Pipe Hitters Union
    HOOAH

  • National Park Mystery Photo 14: You Might Know What This Is, But Where is It?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Cookie nailed it. But, for the bonus round, where in Virgin Islands National Park did I take this shot?

    The answer comes tomorrow....

  • Reader Participation Survey: Should Hunters Be Used to Manage National Park Wildlife?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Deborah,

    Your comment, "One of the few downsides to allowing hunting is that hunters take strong, healthy animals, where natural predators take the weak, sick, and old." is not true.
    1) For Colorado elk hunter harvest in 2008; 21,649 Bull elk, 23,622 Cow/Calf, so MORE cow/calves than bulls. Also, with over 223,000 hunters, that is only a 20% success rate.
    2) Predators are opportunistic and will take any animal, including fully mature bulls. Scientific studies show that cows/calves are the primary targets of wolves, which one could argue are weaker than bulls. The weak, sick and old makes for a good story, but is not consistent with the way things happen in the wild.

    I agree with you on the sound issue, hence my belief that any hunts happen mid-week in the winter, althoguh I am more for rifle usage on these hunts. I personally hunt with bow-n-arrow for elk, as I tend to hunt with my kids and feel a lot safer for us all during those seasons.

  • Reader Participation Survey: Should Hunters Be Used to Manage National Park Wildlife?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    If the hunt were supervised by park service employees to make sure the hunt mimicked the science of natural predator-prey killing of the sick or injured then most people would probably support it. That's one of the reasons the NPS has hired people in the past or used it's own employees was that they would cull the herds scientifically.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 14: You Might Know What This Is, But Where is It?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Timpanogos Cave National Monument has fossil coral. Looks like fossil coral to me.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 14: You Might Know What This Is, But Where is It?   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Brain Coral Virgin Islands National Park