One Hundred Years of the National Park Service

“Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That there is hereby created in the Department of the Interior a service to be called the National Park Service…The service thus established shall promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations hereinafter specified by such means and measures as conform to the fundamental purposes of the said parks, monuments, and reservations, which purpose is to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

An Act of August 25, 1916, Public Law 64-235, (39 STAT 535) to Establish a National Park Service, and for Other Purposes, 8/25/1916

File Unit: Laws of the United States, 1915-16, 64th Congress, 1st Session, Part 3, Public Acts 163-241, 1789 - 2011Series: Enrolled Acts and Resolutions of Congress, 1789 - 2011Record Group 11: General Records of the United States Government, 1778 - 2006

Yellowstone. The Grand Canyon. Yosemite. For many Americans, the mere mention of these sites conjures up images of grandeur and magnificence.

The Tetons - Snake River,” Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming., 1933 - 1942, from the series Ansel Adams Photographs of National Parks and Monuments, 1941 - 1942

As the conservator of the United States’ most storied and important landmarks, the National Park Service is charged with the preservation and operation of each of the nation’s 59 national parks, as well as hundreds of protected shorelines, preserves, and historical landmarks.

This summer, the National Archives will be commemorating the 100th anniversary of the National Parks Service by displaying the document that founded the NPS, the Organic Act of 1916.

Though the first national park had been established at Yellowstone on March 1, 1872, it and subsequently designated national parks were only loosely managed under the Department of the Interior.

By establishing a National Park Service, the Federal Government ensured the efficient and responsible conservation of national landmarks for future generations.

The passage of the Organic Act was the result of a collaborative effort between businessmen, government officials, and private citizens, who together  had advocated for the establishment of a National Park Service for decades.

President Wilson signed the bill on August 25, 1916, and the National Park Service was born.

The Organic Act provided for the appointment of a full-time Director of the National Park Service as well as a support staff to manage the parks from Washington, D.C. These employees were to be paid out of a pool of funds appropriated by Congress. Additionally, the Parks Director was tasked with organizing the system of local officials and park rangers that operated each site.

Today the National Park Service employs over 22,000 full time employees as well as 221,000 volunteers across more than 400 park areas. Each year, the National Park Service enables more than 275 million visitors to experience the beauty and wonder of America’s protected landmarks.

The National Archives will be displaying the Organic Act of 1916 in the East Rotunda Gallery from June 30 through August 31, 2016. Plan your visit and see the origins of the National Park Service for yourself!

Originally posted by todaysdocument

(Dogs at Yosemite National Park,  excerpted from the film “Yosemite Valley“)

Keep reading at On Exhibit: One Hundred Years of the National Park Service | Prologue: Pieces of History

Phoenix will offer transgender-inclusive healthcare to city workers
The City of Phoenix announced Thursday it will offer coverage of transition-related healthcare to municipal employees and their families

Starting January 1, city workers in Phoenix, Arizona will have access to transition-related healthcare through their insurance. This makes Phoenix the first city in Arizona to offer trans-inclusive healthcare to city employees. 

Until now, many healthcare plans, including the one offered to city employees, specifically excluded care relating to gender transition. Now, Phoenix joins a list of cities offering their employees coverage for things like hormone replacement therapy and gender-affirming surgery. 

There was some pushback from groups including the local police union, which criticized the city for covering care it considers “elective” instead of things like contact lenses, orthopedic shoes, skin-tag removal, and in vitro fertilization.

But Michael Soto, a transgender board member of Equality Arizona, explained that not having appropriate health care can cause anxiety and depression.

“Living authentically as yourself every day is really hard” without access to transition-related care, Soto told The Republic.”You’ve always got a barrier and that stress of feeling disconnected from yourself.”

This is so important. Congratulations, Phoenix. 

Assange promises to leak more on Clinton, Dems

WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange on Wednesday night promised to leak “thousands” of document pages pertaining to Hillary Clinton, the Democratic National Committee and the presidential election.

Speaking to Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, the mysterious Assange claimed an upcoming leak would have a “significant” impact on the coming general election.

“We have a lot of material, thousands of pages of material,” said the WikiLeaks leader, who remains in exile at Ecuador’s embassy in London. “There’s a variety of different types of documents and different types of institutions that are associated with the election campaign, some quite unexpected angles that are, you know, quite interesting, some even entertaining.”

Read more here

Meet the Trans Woman Running for Senate in a Mormon State
In running for Senate, Misty Snow is making history as the first trans woman nominated to a major political party. We visited her campaign headquarters in Utah to learn more.

In many ways, Misty Snow, 31, is an ideal candidate to displace Utah’s incumbent Republican Senator, Mike Lee, in this year’s election. Misty’s campaign platform, which focuses heavily on paid maternity leave and women’s reproductive rights, is family-friendly in a state that has more children per capita than any other in the nation. She is of the people, for the people: Misty currently works as a cashier at Harmons grocery store in Taylorsville, Utah. And she is young and progressive—but not a blue-bleeding hardline liberal—in a state that has historically voted red.

“Women’s issues matter to me, and I’m a working class person,” says Misty. “We don’t have a representative democracy anymore, and the only way to fix that is to elect people who really understand the issues that matter to Utahans.”


‘You’re Asian, Right? Why Are You Even Here?’
What I learned when I was attacked—and spared—for my race at a Black Lives Matter protest. By AARON MAK

MILWAUKEE — I knew the protest was going to spiral into something bigger when I saw a man in tears push a police officer. I had never seen anyone lay a hand on a cop, even amicably. But these people gathered now in the street were utterly out of patience. I wasn’t sure whether I would be caught in the crossfire. Then a community activist I had earlier asked to interview spotted me, and called me over.

“I can see from your face that you don’t think you’re safe,” he told me. He was black; I’m Chinese-American. “You are. You’re a minority, too.”

It was just the reassurance I was looking for. It would also turn out to be wrong.

Read more here

anonymous asked:

Unless i looked up the wrong afa, why would anyone think a celt recon is similar to fundamentalist christians?

In response to this post.

Haha, yeah, you looked up the wrong AFA! No worries - there are a ton of organizations labelled AFA, as I just found out doing my own search on Facebook.

The AFA that I’m talking about is the Asatru Folk Assembly. Founded by Stephen A. McNallen in 1994, they’re a Heathen/Folkish neopagan organization, based in California. Recently, there was a shift in management, as it were, and the newly-elected Alsherjargothi Matt Flavel posted a short commentary on the AFA Facebook page that read: 

I rather optimistically assume that that post speaks for itself. If not, I can count at least sexism, transphobia, homo/biphobia, and racism - and I’m sure there’s more “isms” to be found in this disgustingly loaded sentiment. There’s some question of its echoing Hitler’s rhetoric, as well. (To be honest, I’ve never had to deal with neo-naziism before and so I am not well-versed in their literature or ideals. Clearly, that needs to change.)

Now, as I’m not a Heathen, I can’t speak to the organization’s past, but I have seen on multiple blogs that the AFA has always had these leanings and are just being more out and open with them, thanks to Flavel’s election. Several subsequent responses to this post - that have not been deleted by administrators - confirm a veneration of Hitler’s ideals, and all manners of anti-QUILTBAG+ and racist and sexist stands by leaders of a prominent religious organization.

What I can speak to as an Irish Recon is one of the comments, lower down, that the religion of Celtic Recon shares those views. Several CR elders - whatever my personal opinions on their stances and foibles are - spoke out against oppression, racism, etc. on the public CR FAQ before this ever happened. CR was conceived, in part, as a religion intent on being open to everyone. Unfortunately, a lot of CRs in the greater interwebs believe that Celtic cultures are “for” descendants of those cultures. They argue that people should be worshiping whatever they descended from - with the clear note that if your melatonin levels don’t match theirs, you aren’t welcome. Which is absolute bullshit. Before this past July, I had no knowledge of a hereditary link to Celtic heritage (and what link I do seem to have is still, to my mind, questionable) - but because I’m white, I’m still okay to practice? Bullshit. Because if I wasn’t white, I wouldn’t be. If I connect with the religion respectfully, and it’s an open religion, I could be purple and still able to worship. Anyone who says anything else is, barred none, wrong.

So what can you, a hopefully non-racist polytheist, do? 

  • Openly and publically announce your standings. Let no one assume that you’re interested in the sort of values the AFA espouses.
  • If you’re up for it, publically denounce the values of the AFA. This will open you up to some hostility on the internet, so please only do this if you’re psychologically up for it. 
  • Follow CAORANN, Celts Against Oppression, Racism, and Neo-Naziism (if you’re Celt Recon) or Heathens United Against Racism.
  • Keep abreast of these topics. I love reading The Wild Hunt every morning, tbh. And if you don’t know what’s happening in the wider community, you can’t take steps to protect yourself and your community.

For further reading: The Wild Hunt’s original report on this topic || Morgan Daimler’s “Racism is Not a Part of My CR - or My Heathenry” || Lupa’s “#notinmypaganism” || EmberVoice’s “Not in Our Paganism? We’re Not Off the Hook” || Rhyd Wildermouth for Gods & Radicals’ “Editorial: The Witch Hunt that Wasn’t” ||

You may be surprised or not at who has not bothered to speak out against AFA’s views, especially in the Heathen community. Hopefully this will be rectified soon, although it will not surprise me if it’s not.

At this time...

I just want to address everyone who was kind enough to follow me through the Bernie Sanders campaign. Even though his presidential campaign has come to an end that does not mean that the political revolution that he and everyone supporting this blog has to stop. I want to encourage all of you that can vote to vote, raise awareness about major issues in your towns and states, Talk to your representatives. I know the task is daunting but until we stand up as a nation nothing is going to change.

The AP’s defense of its bad Clinton Foundation story is also bad

The response from the AP after backlash about the Clinton story

As AP wrote, our reporting was based on Mrs. Clinton’s calendars covering the entirety of her tenure as secretary of state and on more detailed schedules of meetings and phone calls covering roughly half that period. AP first requested Mrs. Clinton’s calendars and schedules in 2010 and again in 2013 but was unsuccessful. AP then sued the State Department in federal court to obtain the schedules it has received so far. AP expects to receive the remaining files before Election Day and will continue to examine them and report on their contents.

On a human level, this makes the prosecutorial tone of AP’s story much more understandable. It is trying to gain access to public records relating to Clinton’s schedule, and it is meeting resistance. It is frustrated by the resistance and naturally feels that it raises the question of what Clinton has to hide. I get it.

That said, frustration with difficulty unearthing factual information doesn’t change the fact that AP’s math appears to be based on incomplete records. And it certainly doesn’t change the fact that its reporting thus far has not, in fact, managed to unearth any misconduct.

— Vox’s Matt Yglesias

Man, you know, all sick, hateful people do to religion is horribly exploit it and use it as an outlet for their own inner anger:

Whether it’s Christianity,Islam, Buddhism or Hindu, it always ends the same. A sick, sad, angry person was looking for an excuse to be sick, sad and angry.

That religious text just happened to be there. 

But it was always just the excuse,you know.

“Well,  it appears Jesus mostly cared about the poor and wanted to help everyone and be kind!”

“Um, OK, so let’s shit on gay people now! And help the rich! That’s what I’ve learned!”