“This land is your land?”
Not so much anymore.
Now, it’s apparently the US Government’s land.
According to an article released 9/27/2014 by ABC (updated link below), it would seem that the US Government, under Barack Obama, has become even more fiendishly money-hungry than it ever was before, and that’s saying a lot, quite frankly.
Granted, the current $ 17.7 trillion debt needs to be radically down-sized, but the current oligarchy, which already owns most of the land out west, is getting downright persnickety about “their land.”
Indeed, maybe they need to buy more Tomahawk and Hellfire missiles….who knows?
But, just like the regime’s attack on Andy Griffith-style fishing, which under the US Government’s adopted “UN Agenda 21,” sought to severely limit angling in America as led by Obama and his core of radical Progressives; now if you’re a photographer and wish to snap a picture in a US Forest, well guess what? It’s going to cost you–even if you’re snapping a family photo with your cellphone for social media.
No more Ansel Adams for you, America.
That’s right! The story comes to us from ABC News 23 and Greg Newkirk, of Roadtrippers.com:
“In the worst bit of news for professional (and amateur) photographers since personal drones were banned from National Parks, The U.S. Forest Service has set into motion plans to fine picture-takers at least a grand for snapping images in any of the wilderness areas under their care, nearly 36 million acres of wilderness in all.
If the plans are finalized in November, any media with a camera, even a simple cell phone camera, will have to purchase a permit from the Forest Service if they plan on taking photographs in places like Mount Hood or Mount Jefferson, permits that can cost nearly $1500. If they refuse, they risk being fined $1000 for the infraction. As you can imagine, this has given photographers everywhere a reason for concern.
“It’s pretty clearly unconstitutional,” Gregg Leslie, legal defense director at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press in Alexandria, VA told Oregon Live. “They would have to show an important need to justify these limits, and they just can’t.”
According to Leslie, the Forest Service hasn’t shown any real-world justifications for the new law. Others believe that the new limitations are being set into place for a more nefarious purpose: to punish media outlets that report unfavorable stories about wilderness areas by refusing future shooting permits.
“The Forest Service needs to rethink any policy that subjects noncommercial photographs and recordings to a burdensome permitting process for something as simple as taking a picture with a cell phone,” U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, said. “Especially where reporters and bloggers are concerned, this policy raises troubling questions about inappropriate government limits on activity clearly protected by the First Amendment.”
The only time that new rules wouldn’t apply is in regard to breaking news, such as a natural disaster.
Regardless of the reasoning, it’s easy to see why such a change is a terrible idea, particularly when it comes to the fuzziness between who qualifies as media. Would a national news network with the ability to throw away nearly two grand be considered the same media as a self-funded photography blog? Is a journalism student with an iPhone comparable to a salaried news anchor for a local network? The new rules don’t answer these questions, and the room for interpretation could mean that media access to wilderness areas will be only be available to those who can afford it.
Luckily, the Forest Service has opened up for comment. Photogs, give ’em hell.
So, could this be the mere beginnings of Obama’s [Hitlerian] War on photographers by way of eventual journalism?
Comments to the US Forest Service are open until November 30th.
While a few recently published articles have indicated a bit of Forest Service back-pedaling on this issue, no confirmed conclusions or retractions to the new policy impetus have ultimately been made.
While working on the Examiner to post this article from its original source, the link we had earlier established had been altered and replaced with an updated story concerning how the US Forest Service had now changed its purview of the directive, due to concerned backlash.
As a matter of fact, each of the originated ABC News affiliates had either changed the original article to an updated article or taken their original story down ostensibly due to the Obama Administration’s having been implicated in the original article at Conservative Refocus.
In this search link, it can easily be seen how the original story was later removed.