Under this administration, nothing is sacred as we watch the nation’s crown jewels being recut for the rings of robber barons.
For more than 100 years, professional management of our national parks has been respected under both Democratic and Republican administrations. Yes, they have different priorities, the Democrats often expanding the system and the Republicans historically focused on building facilities in the parks for expanding visitation. But the career public servants of the National Park Service (NPS), charged with stewarding America’s most important places, such as the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and the Statue of Liberty, were left to do their jobs.
…The change began within 24 hours of the inauguration when Donald Trump complained that the NPS was reporting smaller crowds on the National Mall than Obama had drawn. Perhaps this is when the NPS wound up on the list of transgressors. Soon the interior secretary, Ryan Zinke, attempted to double the entrance fees, rescinded climate policies and moved seasoned senior national park superintendents around to force their retirements.