President Donald Trump has just issued a gag order to the Environmental Protection Agency and the United States Department of Agriculture, forbidding the scientists working there from sharing their findings with the public and discussing the gag order at all. Their grants have been frozen, which puts a stop to a wide range of important duties like providing “funding for research, redevelopment of former industrial sites, air quality monitoring and education.”
It’s a clear act of political intimidation and a disgraceful effort to halt the flow of scientific discourse. The brave Twitter operator at the Badlands National Park, however, isn’t having any of it. The unknown person, at almost certain cost of their job, has embarked on a one-account act of political defiance, tweeting out climate science throughout the day and thumbing their nose at our climate-denying President and his cabinet of oil oligarchs.
UPDATE: The tweets have been deleted, but here’s a screenshot for posterity.
— Badlands Nat'l Park (@BadlandsNPS) January 24, 2017
The account has since fallen silent. The Trump administration previously ordered a freeze on all social media use by the National Park Service after they tweeted out an image comparing Donald Trump’s miniscule inauguration to President Obama’s enormous crowds. That order appears to have been lifted, but following this little show we can expect all NPS accounts to be shuttered as Trump prepares to open up our natural parks and public lands for fossil fuel development.
Climate change is the biggest threat facing human civilization as we know it, but Trump and his science-denying cronies would rather shut their ears and hide the facts from the public as they work non-stop to silence all those that would challenge their twisted, perverted worldview. These little acts of defiance are vitally important and need to be supported by every American who is terrified at the prospect of our once great nation turning into a repressive oligarchy like Vladimir Putin’s Russia – and for protectiong our pristine wilderness from the ravaging brutality of the drill and the axe.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.