Governor Kristi Noem keeps lying on the job. In her weekly propaganda piece, pushed out to the world on our taxpayer-funded South Dakota State News website, Governor Noem tells multiple lies about her failed lawsuit and National Park Service’s rejection of her request to explode fireworks over a dry forest:
Unfortunately, the Biden Administration does not share South Dakota’s desire to celebrate America’s birthday at our Shrine of Democracy. They arbitrarily and unlawfully denied our permit to hold the event this year, violating a memorandum of agreement that the State of South Dakota had with the Department of Interior [Gov. Kristi Noem, weekly propaganda, 2021.06.04].
- President Joe Biden has as much desire to celebrate America’s birthday as you, I, and any other patriot. He’s been urging us all to get our shots specifically so we can celebrate that momentous holiday together with our friends and neighbors, safely, at Mount Rushmore and in every other corner of this country.
- President Biden has not blocked anyone from celebrating the Fourth of July at Mount Rushmore. Not having fireworks will allow more people to celebrate Independence Day at Mount Rushmore.
- The National Park Service’s denial of the fireworks request was not arbitrary. Judge Roberto Lange said every one of the five reasons NPS gave for denying the request was reasonable and grounded in evidence and standing policy.
- The denial broke no laws. Judge Roberto Lange said the National Park Service is working entirely within its Constitutional and statutory authority. “Unlawful” would have been Judge Lange siding with Noem and using judicial activism to supplant the Congressionally authorized power of the federal Executive Branch with his or Kristi’s own arbitrary preferences.
- The National Park Service violated no agreement. There was no agreement to hold fireworks at Mount Rushmore in 2021. As Judge Roberto Lange pointed out at the top of his ruling, the Special Use Permit NPS issued for the unusual 2020 Rushmore fireworks show said, “Issuance of this permit is for the current year 2020 and does not mean an automatic renewal of the event in the future.” All the out-of-state $600-an-hour lawyers in Kristi’s world can’t rewrite that plain fact.
I haven’t personally lit a firecracker or purchased roadside ordnance to celebrate the Fourth of July in this century. Yet the Fourth of July remains my favorite, most meaningful, most contemplative holiday. I enjoy fireworks, but I don’t need to blow stuff up or go watch someone else blow stuff up in a combustible forest to revel in the liberty my taxes and patriotism make possible and to ponder the errors my country has made and the reforms my country must make.
The agencies we legally empower to steward our public lands are saying the rational, lawful, and non-radical thing: enjoy the Fourth, but let’s not burn down the forest. Noem’s contrary blurtings are the empty lies of a woman thinking of herself and not her country.