US: The Dark Side of National Parks

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Official National Parks (US)

Considering that the United States of America (USA) was the historical product of an expansionist European land-grab, premised upon genocide and slavery, it is interesting to note that its geographical area has at least 58, 59 or 65 registered National Parks (depending upon source), that cover a combined area of around 84 million acres. A former police officer – David Paulides – a specialist in cryptozoology, pursues a project of meticulously recording the names, dates, circumstances and backgrounds of the thousands of people that go missing annually in the US National Park system, that remain ‘unfound’ despite extensive searches. Obviously, the National Parks are defined by difficult and dangerous terrain, deep forests, torrents of running or falling water, changeable weather, wild animals, no obvious re-supply of food and water, and quite often no mobile phone coverage, etc. Even extensive searching of such a terrain from the air and on foot is often very difficult, as single individuals or small groups could be anywhere, or obscured by any object. Of course, a dead body might well be scavenged by wild animals, and the bones soon carried away or scattered. If a body falls into the fast-flowing river, it can be washed hundreds of miles away and never be found anywhere near the assumed geographical point of disappearance. Those who become lost, ill, or disorientated in the forests, obviously cannot be seen from the air, and it would take a lucky accident to find them. However, despite these disappearances, thousands of others routinely visit the parks, enjoy a good time out in the wilderness, and suffer no undue accident or injury, safely returning home.

The first such park in the US was the ‘Yellowstone National Park’, which was officially established by President Ulysses S. Grant on March 1, 1872. The National Park Service was established by President Woodrow Wilson on August 25, 1916, as a means to create a body of professional people to patrol, protect and administer the areas. This new service was tasked with protecting people, animals and plant-life, as well as ensuring that individuals or groups were not ‘settling’ on this land in illegal dwellings or communities. The National Park Service is an ‘armed’ branch of the government’s Department of the interior, and Park Rangers possess ‘police’ powers whilst on National Park land. They can draw and use their fire-arms against US Citizens, and possess the power of ‘arrest’ and ‘detention’. Park Rangers can also shoot and kill wild animals if such animals are considered a ‘threat’. Considering that the US political system is a priori set against any and all form of Socialist government, why is it that such a country would maintain such a relatively ‘vast’ system of park land, much of which is freely accessible? The National Parks are financed through the taxation of the US people, probably without their expressed knowledge or consent. This represents a ‘pooling’ of financial resources to achieve a greater end – which indicates a ‘Socialist’ policy.  Why would a generally rightwing political system that advocates a predatory capitalism as a model for each of it citizens to follow, develop and maintain this ‘vast’ park system? The answer is as chilling as it is simple. The National Park system represents the geographical areas the Native American peoples used to live and roam before they were militarily defeated, and forced to live in small ‘Reservation’ areas. The US National Park system represents a colonial and imperialist policy designed to turn the former hunting and burial grounds of the Native Americans, into playthings for the conquering White people (and their allies). As there still exist millions of acres not used for European settlement, the Native American peoples could ‘still’ live on these vast lands, but the European settlers will not allow what they perceive as a threat to their hegemony. Instead, the Native American peoples are forced into artificially ‘limited’ areas, and fed alcohol, drugs and Christianity to keep them ‘pacified’.

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