National Park Service ordered the D.C. Occupiers out — but they’re still there

posted at 6:35 pm on January 30, 2012 by Tina Korbe

For months, the National Park Service and D.C. police have allowed Occupiers to break a no-camping law — but, last week, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform took a peek into the case with a hearing and that seems to have forced the NPS to at least pretend to uphold the law.

At the hearing, NPS officials made a few feeble excuses for their poor enforcement of the law up to this point, trying lamely to make the case that camping in a public place is protected speech. (Supreme Court precedent says otherwise.) Ultimately, though, they also pledged to begin to enforce the law soon.

The NPS then issued a deadline to the Occupy protesters: They had until noon today to remove their camping gear from the two public parks. Not surprisingly, the Occupiers paid no attention to the order. They’re still camped out in McPherson Park and Freedom Plaza — and, what’s more, they vow they’ll continue to stay there as though no order was issued at all.

Defiant Occupy protestors here vowed to maintain their vigil on Monday despite an order from the National Park Service that campers must remove their gear or depart from two federal parks.

As the agency’s noon deadline neared, chanting protestors unfurled an enormous blue tarp emblazoned with “Tent of Dreams” over the center of McPherson Square, one of the two parks. The protestors then dragged the tarp over the statue of James B. McPherson, the Civil War general for whom the park is named, and the statue’s head and shoulders poked through the top of the tarp.

“What they’re doing with this enforcement is a joke,” said Christopher Seerden, 30, of Santa Cruz, Calif., standing next to a tent that he had been wearing like a garment. “People need to have a place to stay.”

That leaves the NPS in a pickle; they said at the Oversight hearing that they would not evict the Occupiers “except in emergency circumstances.” Not sure how filthy the parks will have to become to constitute a health emergency — but you’d think the rat infestation in McPherson Park just might. At any rate, this just underscores the point I made when I first heard the NPS’ plan to enforce the law but not evict the protesters: It’s very hard to enforce the law … without enforcing the law.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

It’s very hard to enforce the law … without enforcing the law.

Profiles in courage…
Mayor Jean Quan, Oakland, CA
NPS

ted c on January 30, 2012 at 6:38 PM

If this stuff allowed, then go with it. I want a slice of Yellow Stone. Occupy Nature!!

abobo on January 30, 2012 at 6:40 PM

Standing ready to enforce laws against Tea Partiers…not so much against everybody else…

MooCowBang on January 30, 2012 at 6:41 PM

Standing ready to enforce laws against Tea Partiers…not so much against everybody else…

MooCowBang on January 30, 2012 at 6:41 PM

Laws ONLY apply to those on the right of center.

KOOLAID2 on January 30, 2012 at 6:44 PM

Those aren’t rats. Those are the female protesters.

CherryBombsBigBrownBeaver on January 30, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Occupy Yosemite!

Who’s with me!!

Demands? Permitted concealed carry in National Parks.

logdogsmith on January 30, 2012 at 6:46 PM

So are the rats

But you repeat yourself…

HotAirian on January 30, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Ask Debbie Wasserman Schultz to make a pass through the park, the OWS’ers will stay but the rats will run for sure.

Tim Zank on January 30, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Wait until an innocent catches a disease due to the rats…

ladyingray on January 30, 2012 at 6:47 PM

But..but..but..we’re protesting and stuff!

SMACKRUNNER on January 30, 2012 at 6:47 PM

C’mon, Parks Department, live up to Uncle Leo’s high reputation of yous and toss the bums out!

The Nerve on January 30, 2012 at 6:47 PM

An #occupy radical strangled his parents and stuffed them in the back of the family’s PT Crusier.
SFGate reported, via FOX Nation:

Friends and relatives said Susan Poff and Robert Kamin of Oakland were the perfect pair to adopt a foster child.

They had dedicated their careers to helping others escape poverty, she as a physician assistant in a city-run clinic in the Tenderloin and he as a clinical psychologist for inmates in the San Francisco County Jail system.

But now, less than a decade after they adopted, their 15-year-old son stands accused of strangling both Poff, 50, and Kamin, 55, then hiding their bodies in the back of the family’s PT Cruiser…

Co-workers said Poff and Kamin were having some arguments with their son, some of it having to do with him spending too much time in the Occupy Oakland encampment, but nothing that sounded beyond the scope of typical teenage rebelliousness.

ted c on January 30, 2012 at 6:48 PM

About time the ghosts of MacArthur, Patton and Eisenhower and a few other greats from the past re-enacted the 1932 removal of the Bonus Army from DC.

Arrest them all, seize assets to pay for the damages. Go for the deepest pockets available, such as parents, perhaps Debbie Wasserman Schultz and all those union leaders who openly backed and supported these OWS thugs. Might wish to include the current POTUS as well.

coldwarrior on January 30, 2012 at 6:48 PM

McPherson Park Square

i live in DC

t8stlikchkn on January 30, 2012 at 6:50 PM

So it begins…

This is how great civilisations die, not with a bang, but with a whimper.

Not through wars or great upheavals, but from silent, self inflicted suicide.

The rats are wonderfully symbolic of America in twilight.

From Oakland to the nations very capitol, the decent begins…

Janovus on January 30, 2012 at 6:50 PM

In that case since the NPS workers say they have no right to evict the people, I guess their budget can be cut as they don’t need so many staff people.

Betenoire on January 30, 2012 at 6:51 PM

Those dang Tea Partiers!

Bmore on January 30, 2012 at 6:51 PM

This is all ,

WE WEEDED Up,MMM…MMM..MMM……..
(sarc)

canopfor on January 30, 2012 at 6:54 PM

These are the ones we’ve been waiting for???

Thank you, Prezdit Obama.

coldwarrior on January 30, 2012 at 6:55 PM

Teargas and firehoses, Teargas and firehoses…

affenhauer on January 30, 2012 at 6:56 PM

Maybe,it was the Annul We Care About Trees ConVention!
=======================================================

Crazy environmentalists mourn dead trees
*****************************************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygY57FdRcr0

canopfor on January 30, 2012 at 6:57 PM

These mayors and the National Park Service are like the weak-willed parents that raised these smelly, spoiled brats. They threaten to punish and threaten to punish but never do. Hence the brats know it’s all bull and continue to do as they please.

predator on January 30, 2012 at 6:59 PM

affenhauer on January 30, 2012 at 6:56 PM

Can we toss in a rubber bullet or two?

predator on January 30, 2012 at 7:00 PM

Maybe,it was the Second Annul Progressive Double RainBow Convention!
(sarc)
============

Finding Double Rainbow
***********************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2pk1aAaqCU

canopfor on January 30, 2012 at 7:01 PM

The authorities need to FINALLY apply this to the crazy helmeted anti-nuke lady who has been camped out in Lafayette Park, right across from the front of the White House.

What a disgusting tourist “attraction.”

Czar of Defenestration on January 30, 2012 at 7:02 PM

What a bunch of spinless morons. Why even make a deadline if you won’t even enforce it in the end? This does nothing but empower the Occupiers.

Roymunson on January 30, 2012 at 7:03 PM

For months, the National Park Service and D.C. police have allowed Occupiers to break a no-camping law
===================================

Very nice,not.So um, these non-compliance(1%’s)get to camp out,
with no camping permit,and no fire permit,while the rest(99%’s)
have to pay to stay,

only in America,er,the other other America….THE LEFT!!

Double Ugh!

canopfor on January 30, 2012 at 7:07 PM

said Christopher Seerden, 30, of Santa Cruz, Calif., standing next to a tent that he had been wearing like a garment.

Heh.

John the Libertarian on January 30, 2012 at 7:09 PM

The protestors then dragged the tarp over the statue of James B. McPherson, the Civil War general for whom the park is named, and the statue’s head and shoulders poked through the top of the tarp.

Yes, my husband and I saw that on FOX News this afternoon. He was red-faced, veins bulging furious. Not just because they showed such disrespect for the statue of Gen. McPherson, but also because he is a descendant of Gen. McPherson.

Flora Duh on January 30, 2012 at 7:14 PM

Stubborn little buggers.

timberline on January 30, 2012 at 7:15 PM

My main concern is that (in the take down of the park) extra care will be needed to ensure that the many rat families be kept together for their safe relocation. Any violence could scatter the adults from the young, maybe they should be left alone while the humans engage in constructive dialogue to aid the spread of socialism.

Just being thoughtful.

BL@KBIRD on January 30, 2012 at 7:16 PM

McPherson Park Square

i live in DC

t8stlikchkn on January 30, 2012 at 6:50 PM

Correct, McPherson Park is in Atlanta. Both named after Gen. McPherson.

Flora Duh on January 30, 2012 at 7:18 PM

Teargas and firehoses, Teargas and firehoses…

affenhauer on January 30, 2012 at 6:56 PM

Break out the tasar, Frazier.

Hit ‘em high
Hit ‘em low
Hot ‘em where the peanuts grow

GO NEWT!!!

timberline on January 30, 2012 at 7:20 PM

John the Libertarian on January 30, 2012 at 7:09 PM

As I (and everyone else in DC) know, no one in DC is from DC.

It's Vintage, Duh on January 30, 2012 at 7:23 PM

I wonder what those pigs would have done to the statue, if they had known that Speaker Gingrich is a descendant of Gen. McPherson.

Flora Duh on January 30, 2012 at 7:24 PM

The director of the NPS should be FIRED!

GarandFan on January 30, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Teargas and firehoses, Teargas and firehoses…

affenhauer on January 30, 2012 at 6:56 PM

Forget fire hoses. Water canons, baby. Water canons.

And if that doesn’t work, I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit…it’s the only way to be sure.

trapeze on January 30, 2012 at 7:36 PM

I am struck by the fact a sweet old lady was dressed down by a Fayetteville DMV clerk a few weeks back for the awful crime of … meandering past the blue privacy line.

But these “solid citizens” in the occupy movement are protected by the police while actually breaking city ordinances and laws.

hawkdriver on January 30, 2012 at 7:39 PM

ted c on January 30, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Strangling is pretty up close and personal. They said the family was worried because he was fixated with violent video games. Here’s an idea: Don’t give him the money to buy them. I have a feeling that these parents were lefty tools that never said no to their little darling.

Blake on January 30, 2012 at 7:45 PM

No one obeys laws in DC.

Wade on January 30, 2012 at 7:52 PM

ted c and Blake. I’m sure you read that the kid was arguing with the parents about being able to spend more time at the occupy movement in Oakland. When I read he was 15, I thought rest in peace to two folks that seemed to be very giving citizens. But I sure wouldn’t let my kid go to a drug infested place of known violence like that. WTH were they thinking? My bet is on your guess, Blake.

hawkdriver on January 30, 2012 at 7:56 PM

If they are calling what is at McPherson Square a rat infestation, then they need to evacuate the whole city. I see more rats where homeless and occupiers aren’t than McPherson Square. This is just something the city government is saying to use as a justification. Next it will be for the children somehow.

These protestors make no sense and are impotent. I cannot see how they think doing this will change anything, and if they can or can’t camp out there I could care less. But I think the rat infestation charge is BS cause I’ve seen it weekly with my own eyes.

And frankly, these are probably the only people in that whole city who is camping out, doing nothing, and not getting a middle class plus salary at the taxpayers expense for doing it. They are cheaper than most people that are “occupying” DC during the workweek.

LevStrauss on January 30, 2012 at 8:29 PM

Clean them out with flame throwers.

xplodeit on January 30, 2012 at 8:50 PM

I’ve had dealings with the NPS (in an urban context) and I’ve always found them to be unwavering, inflexible jerks. The fact that they are willing to bend over backwards for OWS shows just what we’re in for if Obama gets 4 more years. Just like the Capitol police in Atlanta and Wisconsin, these corrupt, unionized (and armed) DNC operatives have shown their willingness to put their political/union beliefs above the law of the land. They willingly choose activism over professionalism. This is the future under Obama, and it ain’t pretty.

Kenz on January 30, 2012 at 9:06 PM

Yet the NPS is going to cut back 75% the number of people who climb the Dome! Must protect nature…except when Lefties want to poop all over it and kill their parents there.

PattyJ on January 30, 2012 at 10:14 PM

So, as a taxpayer, and, therefore, an owner of the park, can *I* enforce the no camping rule? C’mon, let’s get 30 or 40 conservatives to go up and roust ‘em all! Citizen’s arrests everywhere! I’ll bring the zipties!

GWB on February 1, 2012 at 10:24 AM