Yet another open-air memorial has been closed by the National Park Service since the shutdown began, and this one is especially ironic — and infuriating. The heroes of Flight 93 gave their lives to stop al-Qaeda terrorists who had seized their airplane from using it in an attack on Washington DC — either the Capitol Building or the White House itself. The open-air, no-barriers-to-access memorial in Shanksville that marks the spot of their sacrifice got hijacked as a political tool by the NPS and the Obama administration:
Angry visitors have taken out their frustration on the closure sign at the Flight 93 Memorial.
“It’s a memorial for people who were lost in the tragedy. It has nothing to do with the government,” said Jessica Shaffer, who made the trip from Ohio.
“I don’t think it’s right. I don’t think we should be suffering for what our government has done,” said Barry Haslup.
Haslup tried to walk around the closed gate and orange cones, but rangers kindly asked him to turn around.
CNS News went out to the site this weekend, and confirmed that the rangers still have the memorial closed — even though it normally has no barriers to access at any time:
Americans who want to honor and reflect upon the memory of the crew and passengers who perished aboard United Flight 93 on Sept. 11, 2001 will find that the federal government has blocked the road four miles down from the open-air memorial near Shanksville, Pa.
CNSNews.com photographed the spot of the road closure this past weekend. The steel barrier blocking vehicles from passing says: “Because of the federal government shutdown, this National Park Service facility is closed.”
The land around the memorial is supposed to be controlled by the state game and wildlife commission, not the National Park Service, The road, however, is US Route 219, which does fall under the purview of the federal government, at least to some extent. However, the Obama administration isn’t closing all US routes and interstate freeways during this shutdown, and those roads are patrolled not by NPS but by state and local law enforcement. This is clearly a punitive measure imposed by NPS as part of the Obama administration’s Washington Monument strategy, and it’s easily the most offensive yet in light of the sacrifice of those honored at the memorial. Talk about ingratitude.