Brent Smith starts off his June 27 WorldNetDaily column with some anti-gay sneering:
Congratulations, America – we now have our first homosexual national monument. While America and the world are all caught in the drama that is Brexit, Obama has declared a gay bar in Greenwich Village, NYC, a national monument under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service.
Yep – tearing down our society one brick at a time.
The Stonewall Inn was a homosexual hangout in the ’60s. In 1969 police raided the joint, and riots ensued. From then on it has become known as the birthplace of the homosexual movement – as there was no LGBTQ back then. They were just cross-dressers and didn’t spend their time “questioning.”
Smith then expands his attack to the Antiquities Act under which the president is authorized to make such national monument declarations. He rants that the federal government has no authority to do much of anything in the U.S.:
All of this was and is unconstitutional. The president can’t be granted the authority to declare national monuments “in his discretion” because the legislative branch has no constitutional authority to grant it.
Whether you and I are big fans of national parks and historic preservation or not is completely irrelevant. Nowhere in the Constitution is authority granted to anyone in the national (federal) government to create national parks. In fact, the federal government has no authority to make any internal improvements in the United States – of any kind – not parks, roads and bridges – not even the interstate highway system. Yes, the interstate is unconstitutional. These functions were to be left to the states.
But those days are long gone, and there appears to be no way to get that genie back in the bottle.
Smith ignores the fact that challenges to the Antiquities Act on constitutional rounds have generally been upheld.
Smith then makes the weirdly specific claim: "Eight acres of land in New York City now off-limits to development of any kind. Brilliant!" Given that New York City encompasses 300,000 acres, there's hardly a dearth of developable land.
But it appears that Smith was referring to the size of the Stonewall National Monument, which includes part of the street the Stonewall In was on as well as a small park that was already spared from development. And, of course, the reason one protects the area around an historic site is to preserve the character of the area in a way that enhances said site.
But then, Smith thinks the federal government has no role to preserve anything, and he probably wouldn't mind if the Grand Canyon was plowed under like he apparently hopes the Stonewall Inn would be.