Government Shutdown: Elderly Couple Evicted From Their Own Home

Robert Jonathan

The government shutdown has forced an elderly couple to leave their private home in Lake Mead, Nev. for the duration.

The US National Park Service gave Ralph and Joyce Spencer, ages 80 and 77 respectively, 24 hours notice to leave the premises. The Spensers own their own home but it sits on federal land, so they have to get out according to a park ranger.

They bought the cabin in the Las Vegas area in the 1970s. The couple is currently staying with friends until the House and Senate and come to a budget agreement to end the shutdown.

A Park Service statement indicated that "Unfortunately overnight stays are not permitted until a budget is passed and the park can reopen."

According to Las Vegas Channel 13, "The Lake Mead properties are considered vacation homes; one of the lease requirements to own a plot is people must have an alternative residence. Regardless, the Spencers said it's their property and they should be allowed in, shutdown or not."

The Washington Examiner has reported that 83 percent of government operations are unaffected by the shutdown, but there seems to be a disproportionate affect on the Park Service. Officials temporarily blocked elderly military veterans, for example, from visiting the WWII Memorial on the National Mall, an open-air park that normally is accessible 24-hours day, all year round.

Commenting on the government shutdown as it pertains to ordinary Americans, the Ricochet website offered this assessment of the measures taken by the Park Service in the past week: "... pound for pound, nothing comes close to the audacious stupidity of 'Barrycades' and people in pointy little Smokey the Bear hats, poised to protect America's monuments from law-abiding citizens. Welcome to liberal utopia, where barriers are not erected against terrorists or illegal aliens on our nation's borders, but rather against citizens, and where wheelchair-bound veterans enroute to honor their comrades face tighter security than terrorists enroute to murder a US Ambassador. This is where up is down, wrong is right, illegality is celebrated as progress, and where Constitutionalism is derided as racist. No longer relegated to the fever swamps of academic fancy, utopia has acquired real estate and made known its demands."

Do you think the National Park Service is conducting itself appropriately or inappropriately during the government shutdown?