National Park Service to Congress: We need much more strict Congressional oversight!
The Bighammer.net timeline shows the intransigence some federal bureaucracies like the National Park Service can bring to bear. Despite overwhelming popular support, over 40 supporting co-petitioner organizations, and Congressional directives, the National Park Service continues to cling to their dangerous position that the current CFR 36, Regulation 2.4 promotes public safety. In fact, the current National Park Service regulation essentially prevents all forms of self defense even to off duty law enforcement officers. Citizens overwhelmingly support the VCDL Petition to amend the current National Park Service regulations to restore the right of people to defend themselves in National Parks. VCDL's Petition is based on the regulations already in use by the National Forest Service.
In 2005, the Department of the Interior is "petitioned" to amend CFR 36, Regulation 2.4 to eliminate the National Park Service ban on self defense, and restore this right to the people, subject the restrictions of existing state and federal laws. The model already in use for years by the National Forest Service.
When contacted by petitioners the National Park Service once again asserts the mythical 'public safety' justification, adding that there is 'reasonable regulatory relief' as the rule stands. However, now they are 'reviewing the history, to evaluate its continued application.'
The failure of the National Park Service to adopt the amended regulation 2.4 to respect the people's right to self defense in a timely fashion plainly shows they have no interest in public safety. Their actions are indicative only of an agency intent on the preservation of its own "turf" and its own budget. The current regulation's public safety justification & "reasonable regulatory relief" didn't help this innocent victim.
What "reasonable regulatory relief" is the National Park Service speaking of? Certainly that assertion does not ring true according to the Moffat County, Colorado Sheriff's Office.
The National Park Service's ban on self defense cannot pass the 'strict scrutiny' test for the infringement of a fundamental liberty.
The current regulation is a complete usurpation of fundamental rights of the people not supported by an act of Congress, providing no relief to the citizens contrary to the National Park Service's assertions to the Petitioners, and members of Congress.
The current regulation fails to recognize the need for public safety, as the budgets get tighter, Rangers and Park Police resources are spread more thin, and tasked to Homeland Security. EVEN off duty law enforcement officers are prohibited from carrying weapons in National Parks under current Regulations.
The current regulation completely trumps the authority of the States to define what means a person may take to protect themselves.
The actions to date by the Department of the Interior & National Park Service show a lack of concern for public safety. They also demonstrate the need for strict Congressional oversight of Federal bureaucracies and the need for reform. Finally, the Department of the Interior and National Park Service actions show the need for Congressional intervention to get them to amend CFR 36, Regulation 2.4 as the VCDL Petition requests without further delay.