Obama Keeps World War II Memorial Closed Despite Outcry from Veterans

The government shutdown means the closure of all national parks and memorials, right? Not necessarily, according to the House Natural Resources Committee. The Obama administration is selectively choosing which monuments to keep open and which to block off (click to see the map).

Despite the public outcry and pleas from the American Legion (watch video), the Obama administration continues to lock veterans out of the World War II memorial.

The political stunt — a result of President Obama’s decision to shut down the government to protect Obamacare — has prompted questions from members of Congress.

“It appears as though only the highly visible monuments and areas are being closed to the public – further proof that the Obama Administration is only playing politics and purposely choosing to make this shut down as painful as possible,” said House Natural Resources Chairman Doc Hastings.

These open-air sites, normally open to the public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, were not closed during the last government shutdown in 1996 or during the Occupy D.C. camp.

“This does not need to happen and should not happen,” Hastings said on the House floor. “And I urge Senate Democrats and the President to stop going out of their way to make the government shutdown as painful as possible. I urge them to come to the table and negotiate an end to the shutdown.”

Heritage legal expert Hans von Spakovsky has studied the law and determined there is no justifiable reason for closing the World War II Memorial. While the Obama administration continues the political stunt, veterans and citizens have taken matters into their own hands to keep it open.

On Thursday, I witnessed a man dressed a black shirt, jeans and a military fatigue cap at the World War II Memorial cut the wires bounding the barricades together and tear them open so visitors could enter. He walked around perimeter of the monument to ensure all the entrances of the monument were open then he saluted and ran across the street toward the Washington Monument.

The World War II Memorial remained open for about two hours. The park rangers began kicking everyone out and blocking the entrances before an Honor Flight tour group arrived. The rangers allowed the veterans in, but blocked entrance for others and told them that the memorial had been closed all day — contradicting what I saw firsthand.

Will the barricades be strong enough to keep veterans and citizens out this weekend?

Source material can be found at this site.

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