Tuesday, October 8, 2013

National Parks at it Again?

With the government shut down entering its second week there are stories circulating on the internet about National Park Service staff being told to make life difficult for visitors to attractions such as Mount Vernon,  once home to George Washington.  Mount Vernon is not run by the Park Service,  yet the parking lots are,  apparently. By closing these, the pressure stays on to end the shut down.  There are stories of other vendors being directed to cease operations although they maintain private payrolls.

We didn't link to the stories here because this blog isn't usually about politics or the budget,  shutdown or otherwise.

What we will say is that we have witnessed rangers being purposely difficult, at times obtuse,  when it came to nudity.  In one glaring example about 20 years ago the Superintendent of the Canaveral National Seashore in Florida didn't like a court ruling that said mere nudity did not necessarily equal a federal offense.

So, instead of workihg with nudists to help educate the public about the traditional nude beach near parking lot 13, or putting in advisory signage about its location,  the seashore staff sulked and told visitors "we really can't stop you from going naked anywhere (or tell you where to avoid nudity if it's not your thing)."

Consequently,  user conflict increased during the  brief time staff pulled these tricks. Complaints were generated to support cries that there ought to be a law, Congressman Dave  Weldon struck and the rest,  as they say, was history.

On other park lands some staff refuse to meet with (clothed) nudist leaders, or even to take literature fom nudists. They seem to have forgotten who owns the parks.  ALL of us!