Recent comments

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Please. RAH,don't say that a gun on the hip will not change my experience as much as a cell phone. That is ludicrous. No one fears a cell phone. You might annoy me with a cell phone , but if I am hiking a trail and meet you with a weapon on your hip, I am going to be afraid.

    Your point about hunters and national parks is valid. Teddy Roosevelt was a hunter and conservationest.

    I know that you keep your dogs on a leash when they are in a national park area and refrain from taking them in the back country. Many don't however, and I don't think carrying a weapon to protect your dog off a leash in the back country of a national park area is not a valid reason to permit weapons in national parks.

    Rick Smith

  • More Low Water Woes at Lake Mead – but This Isn't the Worst Drought on Record for the Lake   5 years 28 weeks ago

    just dont go to the new shore line you may sink in 40 year old silt up to your waist

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    I agree Kurt that in the NPS that are in several states that which state law governs is a big problem.

    However the NPS is not an independent state and cannot have jurisdictional authority and has to abide by the DOI. That is why regulations have to very thoughtfully thought out and the exceptions clearly defined.

    As to the attitude of distrust the comment of Jim D “Just what we need: a bunch of violence-predisposed people carrying guns in our national parks, which historically are among the safest places in the entire country.”

    Rangertoo expressed the idea that children need to be defended from the sight of men with rifles.” understand that not everyone who owns a gun is a nut, but at least now, if someone shows up at a children's program with a gun, the NPS can take action to protect children.”

    Jim Hiker expressed a similar opinion “but to protect the wildlife in the NP's from poachers, and people carring firearms/weapons who don't respect the wildlife for what they are; wild”

    So if you really do not believe that people will abuse the right then what is the objection? Because this objection existed when the idea was just to allow CCW holders. I understand the discomfort that people may suffer from seeing civilians with guns openly holstered or rifles slung over the shoulder. That is because they are not used to the sight. It is not scary to see people carrying rifles and guns at a range because that is expected. People are used to seeing police and rangers with guns. They quickly become accustom as long as those people do not brandish or appear to threaten with a gun.

    Personally I am more concerned that those who are not CCW holders will be less careful; and will shoot signage, flora and fauna. However I want those people arrested and charged if they do. I want that type of behavior punished.

    I love my NPS lands and like to enjoy them. I generally travel to them on vacation and take my dogs and they have been a lot of fun. As long as guns stay in holsters and in cars I do not mind. They only time they come out is maybe cleaning and if in defense only.

    Because of the risk of dogs getting bears, cougars to come to humans I have refrained from bringing my dogs at those parks because I do not want that situation where the dog is chased by an angry bear or hungry cougar. I do not expect to have to use a weapon against a bear or cougar and succeed unless the situation is dire.

    A handgun is a poor tool to defend against a bear anywhere, even a black bear. At best the sound may discourage but the bullet won’t.

    However I like to take a weapon and find ranges in other states and not to have to worry that I have violated a technically of storage will be a great relief. So I do want the laws liberalized in the NPS.
    I expect that once the thrill of ability has worn off most will continue to keep guns hidden so not to disturb others. People in some states have the ability to OC and most do not do so. I expect that pattern to continue.

    I read Rick C’s comment and the ability to carry a handgun or rifle will not change that experience of being a in a special place. A gun on the hip will not change the experience as much as the cell phone. People are always chattering on those and it is disconcerting. Hunters often travel to wilderness locations to hunt, but they spent most of their time enjoying nature. Some hunters stop hunting because they do not enjoy the hunt and trophy more than the trip.

    Many of parks were created by the desires of hunters to maintain areas that would not be developed. They felt the best way to protect these special places was by creating parks. The history of NPS is full of great hunters that protected the land and put it in protection

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    RAH,

    Of course it's rational for Wisconsin to ignore what neighboring states do when it comes to what laws it passes and enforces. My point was that, in the case of more than a few national parks, the parks are federal reserves within a state, much like tribal lands within a state are separate entities and fully capable of enforcing their own laws.

    In short, some, if not many, parks retain "exclusive jurisdiction" for what goes on inside their boundaries. In many cases states formally ceded the land involved to the federal government.

    My point was that, in such settings, I don't think it's irrational for a park to have laws differing from the surrounding state.

    And the contention made by you and others that those who support the existing set of gun regulations -- that weapons may be transported as long as they're out of reach and broken down -- do so out of fears that gun owners would "turn into homicidal maniacs" is weary and off-base. Read Rick Smith's comment above. I share his position.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    The ability to carry in a park concealed or open would not have any effect on these desirable characteristics. Discharge of a gun for non lawful puposes is still illegal so what is the problem. Is it because you think they will shoot at signs, trees or animals? Laws that try to stop an action because they "may" do something is wrong. If the peson does an illegal discharge of a weaponthey can be charged.

    These laws do not ever stop anyone who plans on vandalism, poaching or atatcking the fellow man,. They only stop those who want to obey the law. These prohibition are targeted at the lawabiding. The criminals do not care!

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Kurt, No state can dictate to another state its laws. I thought you understood our system of federalism and that this is a republic. Why would that be rational ? It is not the same thing at all and you probably know that.

    The state is not dictating to the federal government. This is the Senate of the US aligning NPS gun policy with local states just as the Forest Service and BLM does. Why does it get you upset?
    Your concern were minor risk that are extremely unlikely. These objections seem absurd.

    What difference is it when a woman carries a gun concealed with CCW license outside a park and then in a park, She does not change to a homicidal maniac and will brandish her gun anymore in NPS as she would outside NPS.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    2nd amendment proponents have made some sound arguments on the Traveler about the gun regs in parks and wildlife refuges. However, the one made by Anon above--"It is irrational to prohibit carry in NPS when it is pefectly legal in the adjoining state" is not one of them. There are all kinds of things that one can do in an adjoining state that are illegal in most parks--hunting, driving off road, driving 70 mph, picking wildflowers, etc. That's the point about parks. They are meant to be different than other places, and despite Frank C's arguments to the contrary, I think that most of us believe that they are different and we are glad they are. The National Park System is full of special places, places that beginning with Yellowstone, each succeeding generation of Americans, speaking through their elected representatives, believed merited protection in perpetuity. I always felt that the boundaries of a national park area should mean something. Upon entering, you were going to a place where you could turn off your blackberry, take off your wrist watch, and turn down your Ipod and live for a period of time according to the rhythms of nature or the ebb and flow of history. That's why they're so special and why we must exercise the highest standards of care to see that they remain so.

    Rick Smith

  • Help Ken Burns Chronicle the Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago


    I have some photographs from a flight in '05 of the top of Denali. It was an unusual year as the mountain was visible both from the train and from the flight

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Yes, Rationally the 2A allows the right to keep and bear arms. Most states have similar language. Many states allow OC and 38 states allows CCW or LTC. The 2A particularly says the federal government may not infringe that right. Prohibiting carry in public lands such as NPS is infringing that right. Read the Coburn amendment it specifically refers to the 2A language to justify the amendment that DOI has no authority to promulgate or enforce gun laws. That means gun restrictions in NPS. That is because the 2A is not incorporated throughout the states except in the states covered by the 9th Circuit Ct, which just recently decreed that the 2A is incorporated. Those states are Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, Ca, Nevada and Arizona. Of all those states the only state that had restricted OC and CCW was CA. All the other states allow OC and CCW in the 9th Circuit Ct.

    So for instance in Virginia that allows OC and CCW there should be no restriction by NPS only state law would apply to visitors in Shenandoah.

    If the person come from West Virginia the same applies since their laws are the same as Virginia. Maryland however has LTC but not OC so only those who possess a LTC could carry on NPS lands in Md like Assateague NP.

    DC, which has the monuments and mall, has restrictions on carry so far and those restrictions would apply on NPS run parks in DC. So there would not be CCW or OC in DC on the monument grounds.

    States cannot impose their laws on adjoining states that violate the federalism nature of our Republic.

    The federal government cannot either on the states they can only say what applies on federal land. The BLM and National Forests use the states laws to abide on guns on those federal areas. Only NPS and Wilderness Areas seems to have this massive urge to ban guns carry whether open or concealed.

    They had the option for CCW and they fought that and manage to get it suspended so now they may suffer open and loaded carry of handguns and long arms.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    "It is irrational to prohibit carry in NPS when it is pefectly legal is the adjoining state."

    So is it irrational to prohibit carry in Wisconsin because it adjoins states that permit carry? Is it irrational for different states with CCW to have different requirements for CCW?

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Actually I thought Frank C was on topic since it was in response to our supposed duty to follow all stupid laws and he pointed out the logical extension of that policy of obedience. Where Beamis went off topic is brining up our foreign policy which is irrelevant to this topic.

    The point is not that all people obey all laws stupid or not. We don't. Most of us speed and that is against the law. I do not carry or store in the NPS since where I live, that is difficult. Plus I did not care to have extra weight when I used to backpack. Howver one of my party did carry a 45 in the backpack in post 1976 and we had no idea that was illegal at the time.

    It is irrational to prohibit carry in NPS when it is pefectly legal is the adjoining state. Most of the opposing arguement are about lack of need which is not a requirement to execise a constitutional right. Also worry about poaching which would still be prohibited so that is a false arguement.

    I wish that people would accept that the 2A means people can have, carry and use guns. That means most any place not only in few locations.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Anon---I was merely responding to the Godwin's Law comment (which you did not see fit to brand as "off topic"). Tangential thinking and commenting is what an open forum is all about.

  • Here's How You Can Follow Science At Great Smoky Mountains National Park From Afar   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Thanks for pointing out the link problem, Rob. It's now fixed. If you like this web innovation, check back tomorrow to see what the folks at Zion (with help from Glacier, I think) are doing. A great piece of interpretation and education.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    In Virginia a CCW person can walk in the State house with a weapon and visit his representative.

    Coburn may allow that in his home state. But in DC there is still a gun ban and carry ban in effect. Senator Webb ran into that problem with his assistant getting caught with a gun in his briefcase.

    The difference is that in DC they do not trust the public with carrying weapons. In Virginia they do. OC and CCW is allowed in Virginia and they have less crime than DC. I am not implying that guns are the reason that Virginia has less crime. More to do with demographics but DC guns laws do not help

  • Here's How You Can Follow Science At Great Smoky Mountains National Park From Afar   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Thanks, Kurt. This is a nice example of what can be done with the web. The first story link (Great Smoky Mountains National Park) came back as broken when I tried it. Keep up the great work!

    rob
    ---
    Executive Director,
    Crater Lake Institute
    www.craterlakeinstitute.com

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    Beamis your comment is really off topic. You will get a lot of arguement about the wars being unconstitutional. Since this site is about NPS and the topic is loosening gun carry in the NPS.

    Keep on topic.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    MRC, I agree. So instead I could point to the Volstead or Patriot Act as a way of mitigating against the dreaded effects of Godwin's Law. There are plenty of unjust and tyrannical edicts to go around right here in the land of the free and the home of the brave before needing to invoke our German, Russian or Chinese brethren in the fine art of repressing human liberty. Our rulers are quite capable in this arena.

    No need for imports on this issue.

    Our current un-Constitutional wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan qualifies the U.S. government as the number one outlaw in the world at the present time.

    Thanks for the reality check MRC. Who needs the Nazis when you've got the current band of pirates in DC to hold up to scrutiny? Torture, counterfeiting (the printing press of the Federal Reserve), bloody aggression against civilian populations, lying, cheating and all other sorts of thuggery----yes we've got it all.

    Who needs Himmler when you've got Dick Cheney?

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    @Frank C: Well, it did take a while, but finally you made it. Thank you for proving Godwin's Law again. This thread can be closed now.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    The point I was making is to respect the laws of the land. Including the stupid ones.

    Wow.

    Statements like these from jim.hiker show how a government is able to exterminate millions of people using the "laws of the land" like the Nuremberg Laws.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    It is everybody's choice to carry or not in the backcountry except in NP's.

    I did a quick search and could only figure out that if caught in a NP and not following the existing law concerning firearms and weapons then the individual is subject to fines, possible loss of permit, possible loss of weapon, and possible confinement. So it sounds to me that it depends on the circumstances in which the person is caught and how they interact with the ranger who catches them. The point I was making is to respect the laws of the land. Including the stupid ones. I don't agree with them all, but I follow them and try to change them through the appropriate channels. Yes, I do have a lead foot and have paid for it on occasion.

  • Senate Loads Credit Card Bill With Amendment to Allow Loaded Weapons in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    The right to self protection is even more needed in areas of our nation in which there is less protection from criminals and animals that might attack humans. This law was a step in the right direction.

  • NRA Appeals Ruling Blocking Concealed Carry in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    might I add that cars are known to have significant environmental impact. They are banned from the best parts of the Okefenokee, and should be. I dare say that boat motors have a greater environmental impact there than guns have or would.

  • NRA Appeals Ruling Blocking Concealed Carry in National Parks   5 years 28 weeks ago

    "people with guns kill more people than people without guns" is just plain false, at least in the US and Canada.

    people with cars kill orders of magnitude more than people with guns

    maybe in a country where people have guns and not cars, that might be true ... if you can name one ... but the cost of bullets in such economies generally means enemies are killed by other means, like necklacing

  • Massive Avalanche Took Out Sections of Stone Wall, But Glacier National Park's Sun Road Should Open On Schedule   5 years 28 weeks ago

    The last avalanche occurrences of this magnitude in GP were probably in mid February of 1978. At that time a group of friends and I were embarking to Polebridge to ski into Bowman Lake. We were in the first of two vehicles and made it in. Avalanches along the North Fork of the Flathead river subsequently blocked the road and the second vehicle had to hole up in Whitefish. On that evening, a powerful avalanche knocked out a US Hwy - 2 bridge over the Flathead river at the southern boundary of the park. 1978 was a huge winter for snow.

  • Judge Blocks Wal-Mart SuperCenter From Opening Near Joshua Tree National Park   5 years 28 weeks ago

    It seems too many judges, especially in CA have forgotten common sense and reality. Since we all have to live with many of the decisions it would make sense to have someone making those decisions who have at least studied a bit about science and economics. Like many others not from CA I am getting a bit tired of paying extra in pricing for all of the warning labels and such that have been instituted because some judge doesn't understand Darwin in addition to those who have allowed many needed projects in adjoining states to be blocked by the lobbying of special interest groups. .