Brengel says it would be a waste of time and money for park managers at such national park sites as the Gateway Arch in St. Louis or the San Antonio Missions to have to justify why they won’t allow hunting.

Brengel thinks involving the National Park System was probably an unintended consequence of a bill that was designed to try to bypass protections for public land. Either way, she says, almost 70 current national park sites already allow hunting. For the rest – from the Statue of Liberty to Civil War battlefields and the Flight 93 National Memorial – her group believes there are places firearms just don’t belong.

“These are not sites that were ever intended to allow hunting or recreational shooting. They were really there for educational purposes or for people to learn about history, or really appreciate the scenery and the natural setting.”

The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., has 27 cosponsors and bipartisan support. Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J., tried unsuccessfully to amend the bill last week to ensure that national parks were excluded. NPCA says it now will push for what it calls a “genuine exclusion” in the Senate.

Content provided on behalf of National Parks Conservation Association. Contact: Shannon Andrea, 202-254-3371, [email protected],