In an effort to maximize the pain of the government shutdown, the National Park Service (NPS) ordered the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to shut down a host of popular parks. However, the DNR decided to enforce its Tenth Amendment rights instead.
The DNR rejected the NPS’ request on the ground that a majority of the funding for the parks comes from its own coffers. It issued a statement noting that all state parks, trails and other recreational properties will remain open.
And, it removed barricades from a boat launch along the Mississippi River that was shut down by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, despite it being on federal land. The DNR claims it has the authority to operate the launch under a 1961 agreement with the federal government.
In a sign of just how easily states can do without federal assistance, Wisconsin plans to operate its parks entirely with its own funds. The sky has not fallen in The Badger State without Uncle Sam holding its hand.
Wisconsin’s efforts to protect its 10th Amendment rights by reopening parks it largely funds are a reminder of a growing effort by states to take back their freedoms.
Last November, Colorado and Washington effectively nullified federal marijuana laws by legalizing the recreational use of the drug.
In April, Kansas passed the strongest Second Amendment protections to date, nullifying a wide range of federal intrusions against gun owners. The law bars state and local officials from enforcing any laws that contradict the Second Amendment, provided the affected firearm was made in the state. Any federal agent caught violating this law would be subject to felony charges.
And, as Downtrend reported on Wednesday, California will not comply with the indefinite detention provision of the NDAA.
These and the many other actions by states to protect their Constitutional rights under Obama’s reign are helping prevent a total federal takeover. More such instances will be necessary as the Obama Administration becomes increasingly desperate to solidify its totalitarian grip on society.
Photo credit: Flickr/Richard Hurd