Wednesday, May 20, 2009

It Doesn't Get Any Crazier Than This

The United States Senate passed a bill about credit card reform. Senator Coburn from Oklahoma attached a rider that would allow people to carry loaded firearms in the National Parks. Here's a quote from the Daily Kos.

“Park wildlife, including some rare or endangered species, will face increased threats by visitors with firearms who engage in impulse or opportunistic shooting,” said Mr. McElveen.

“One of our members reported to me that in Yellowstone National Park, rangers found an 11-year-old kid on the side of the road illegally shooting at squirrels with his dad. When confronted, his dad said, 'I always carry a loaded pistol, and these are just squirrels.' If he had not been carrying a readily-accessible, loaded firearm, I don’t think this incident would have happened,” he added.

“The presence of a loaded weapon is one of the only clues available for rangers to discover and prosecute those who illegally kill wildlife,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “Allowing loaded weapons in national parks will put wildlife—and possibly park visitors—in the crosshairs, as well as create even more law enforcement challenges for already overtaxed park rangers.”

Americans, write your representatives.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for alerting me to this problem. This little "add-on" to the credit card bill was not publicized so I had no idea.

I agree that this is the worst possible thing for national parks.


Linda said...

Here in Montana this has been a hot issue, of course. I had a heated discussion about this a few days ago with Senator Tester's staffer who came to Livingston for a "listening" session and really got an earful. Unfortunately, it's too late to do anything to stop this bill. It was passed into law by the house and signed by President Obama. There will be no chance of repeal in this Congress. We can complain and express our outrage, and that's good, but the best thing is to collect anecdotes about the horrible results of this law all year and use them to demand a repeal of this rider in next year's Congress.

Montana Barb said...

I was furious when I heard this rider had been added to the bill! It is so sneeky and lowdown! Believe me I though of you, Doug, as I know well the enforcement nightmares in the Park. Plus the yahoos are still convinced that a gun is safer against an attacking bear than bear spray (it's not!). And I do believe violence against other humans will also increase. Insane! Oh, and kudos to our neighbor Linda for being more proactive than us.