Imagine this: You’re out with your family in one of the parks in New York state where you can actually see the stars when it gets dark. You look up in the sky, see a constellation, and you point upwards to show your kids. Along comes a park ranger demanding to see your Stargazing Permit, and issues you a citation because you didn’t know you needed such a permit.
That’s right, the state of New York is now demanding us peasants give them money so we can look up at the sky.
Unsurprisingly, the only two regimes to ever regulated stargazing have been the inquisition and @NYGovCuomo
— Sal the Agorist (@SallyMayweather) January 22, 2020
This is totally a real thing, as it shows up on the state’s permitting for “Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation” schedule:
Fee of $35.00, $60-Out of State –Vehicle Registration and Driver’s License Required
- Permit allows after sunset parking for stargazing only,valid January 1 -December 31at:
- Hither Hills -Except July & August
- Jones Beach -West End 2 and Field 6
- Montauk Point –Upper Parking Lot
- Robert Moses -Field 2
- Gov. Alfred E. Smith/Sunken Meadow -Field1 & Field 3
- Wildwood –Main Parking Lot
Sold at:Babylon Headquarters-Permit Office (beginning January 2nd), Jones Beach, Montauk Downs, Robert Moses, Governor Alfred E. Smith/Sunken Meadow and Wildwood
StargazingPermits are only sold January 1 –March 31 and the Tuesday after Labor Day -December 31.
They also make you buy a permit if you want to dive into the water. It’s the “regional diving permit” and it costs $80 for in-state residents and $125 for out-of-state. Want to run your metal detector over the dirt? Fork over $40, you peon, or end up in jail!
Even Neil deGrasse Tyson chimed in:
No. Back in the day, you didn’t need permission to look up at the sky.
— Neil deGrasse Tyson (@neiltyson) January 22, 2020
Others are defending the permit in the thread, claiming that it allows people to enter the “closed parks” after hours. But they are clearly missing the point. If you can enter the park with a permit, then it’s not “closed” at all. It’s opened to anyone willing to be extorted or who can afford it. Those who are unable to pay the government or choose not to do so for the exact same activity will be arrested and or further extorted.
Now for the irony and blatant statist hypocrisy. If you want to go after dark to look at stars on state land that you paid for through your tax dollars, you have to pay the government more money for a permit. However, if the government wants to take the most sacred land in the state and put a telescope on it to look at the stars, this is fine and dandy. If you try to protest the government’s construction of star gazing equipment on your sacred land, you can and will be kidnapped and caged.
Case in point: Mauna Kea’s summit is the most sacred of all the mountains in Hawaii to many of the indigenous people. In July, when those people showed up to protest the desecration of their land with the Thirty-Meter Telescope, dozens were arrested.
The libertarian anarchists are having a field day with this.
You're not far off – the whole set of US and State Supreme court cases affirming rights to film police was due to officer Ralph Goar accosting an insomniac nighttime birdwatcher, in the act of – birdwatching – and charging him w/ felony wiretapping for recording the accostation.
— Dan Quixoté (@DanQuixot1) January 22, 2020
Wanna look at the sky from this particular patch of dirt? Pay up. Better get your permits early, nature closes at 11 and if you don't have this slip, we'll give you another one that costs even more.
— CrystalClearGameStudios (@CrystalClearGa2) January 23, 2020
So what happens when an illegal alien wants to look up at the sky, and can’t get the permit because he doesn’t have proper ID? ACLU would no doubt sue the state for millions, and the taxpayers would be on the hook for it.