South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem confirmed that her state will move forward with plans for a large Independence Day celebration at Mount Rushmore on July 3, telling Fox News’ Laura Ingraham that while free masks will be given out to those who desire to wear them, there will be no social distancing.
Thousands are expected at the festivities that will be attended by none other than President Donald Trump. The event will feature fighter jets soaring over the 79-year-old monument, along with the first fireworks display at the site since 2009.
Noem, a Republican, made clear that they would not impose coronavirus restrictions on the crowd.
“We will have a large event at July 3rd. We told those folks that have concerns that they can stay home, but those who want to come and join us, we’ll be giving out free face masks, if they choose to wear one. But we will not be social distancing,” she said during a Monday night interview on the Ingraham Angle.
According to Noem, state officials have told South Dakotans to “focus on personal responsibility,” adding, “Every one of them has the opportunity to make a decision that they’re comfortable with.”
The governor’s remarks appear to diverge from the National Park Service, which says “We ask the public to be our partner in adopting social distancing practices when visiting parks.”
A website for the event says “attendance will be limited" to 7,500 participants through a lottery to take place in June.”
Noem has been the subject of immense scrutiny from the Left and mainstream media due to her refusal, amid the height of the COVID-19 panic, to order business closures or stay-at-home mandates, unlike most other governors around the country.
When asked about why she went against the grain of the typical response to the coronavirus situation, Noem replied:
(bit)It was a decision that I made. The facts on the ground here did not support shelter-in-place. We just didn’t have the spread.
For me personally, I took an oath to uphold our state Constitution. I took an oath when I was in Congress [she served in the House from 2011 to 2019] to uphold the United States Constitution. So I believe in people’s freedoms and liberties and I always balance that with every decision that I make as governor.
I get overly concerned with leaders who take too much power in a time of crisis because I think that’s how we directly lose our country someday by leaders overstepping their proper role.(eit)
Contrary to what the conventional wisdom would dictate, South Carolina managed to flatten the curve without a lockdown.
The president’s upcoming trip to Mount Rushmore has received pushback from American Indian tribes who, in the wake of racial unrest following the death of George Floyd, claim the national monument is racist.
“Mount Rushmore is a symbol of white supremacy, of structural racism that’s still alive and well in society today,” said Nick Tilsen, a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe and the president of a local activist organization called NDN Collective.
Even the official Twitter account of the Democratic National Committee on Monday night accused President Trump of “glorifying white supremacy” for visiting Mount Rushmore.
“Trump has disrespected Native communities time and again,” Democrats wrote. “He’s attempted to limit their voting rights and blocked critical pandemic relief. Now he’s holding a rally glorifying white supremacy at Mount Rushmore — a region once sacred to tribal communities.”
They later deleted the tweet after receiving backlash.
The left’s opposition to the Independence Day celebration at Mount Rushmore joins two simultaneous liberal movements: The resurgence of the COVID-19 hysteria and the “social justice” assault on history that has Black Lives Matter vandals defacing statues across the nation.
While agitators initially targeted confederate monuments, now everything historically American is considered racist, from statues of George Washington to Ulysses S. Grant and Abraham Lincoln. Even statues of Jesus are now considered “a form of white supremacy.”
At the same time, the media wants the public to worry about climbing COVID-19 cases, even though the virus is not deadly for most who catch it and the original purpose of the lockdowns was to “flatten the curve,” not eliminate it completely. States such as Texas and Florida have already buckled under the pressure, bringing back some restrictions they had lifted. And many localities are issuing mask-wearing mandates.
Of course, mass Black Lives Matter riots are conveniently exempted from the Left’s list of things that must be shut down to combat coronavirus.
Governor Noem doesn’t appear likely to give in on either count. In response to the idea of getting rid of Mount Rushmore, she succinctly stated: “Not on my watch.”
Image: blackestockphoto/iStock/Getty Images Plus
Luis Miguel is a marketer and writer whose journalistic endeavors shed light on the Deep State, the immigration crisis, and the enemies of freedom. Follow his exploits on Facebook, Twitter, Bitchute, and at luisantoniomiguel.com.