(We are pleased to post the following guest commentary from Mark Karlin, editor of BuzzFlash.com).
Once our National Parks were a refuge of nature and tranquility, but that part of the American Dream just got shot full of holes by the NRA.
Attached to the so-called credit card reform bill that went into effect on February 22nd was – as is often the case in D.C. – a special interest amendment moved along by the NRA and its puppets. It allows, as of Monday, gun toters to carry their guns, including handguns, into National Parks as long as they are in compliance with state law, as if any park ranger is going to check that one out.
Now the sound of gunfire will have to be added to future filming amidst the majestic sounds of wildlife.
Ironically and reflective of the backwards state of American politics, violence in National Parks has gone down in recent years.
As theLos Angeles Times noted, "Major crimes reported in 2008 were at the lowest level since at least 1995, according to park service statistics." But that doesn't stop the indomitable power of the NRA from taking home a scalp for its members by making National Parks more dangerous by ending a prohibition on gun toters.
Frankly, at BuzzFlash, we are thinking of starting a Committee for the Right to Keep and Arm Bears.
They are going to need firepower now, as well as providing bullet proof vests to park visitors. Protect people and the wildlife; that's what Congress should be doing, instead of the bidding of the NRA.
So you may have a modicum more protection from credit card predators, but watch out for the bullets whizzing by when you bring your family to enjoy the wonders of America's wondrous National Park system.