Initial Meeting of the National Parks Revolutionary Coordinating Committee – McSweeney’s Internet Tendency
BADLANDS: My fellow national treasures, I call this meeting to order. Thank you all for coming. It seems like nobody else is willing to save America, so I’m taking matters into my own landscape. Our purpose today is to decide on our initial strategy.
SHENANDOAH: I’m not sure I’m comfortable with this. I mean, we’re parks. What the heck are we going to do to combat the Trump administration? Aren’t we supposed to just sit here looking pretty and letting people visit us?
BADLANDS: Look, our mission as parks is “to preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations.” But if we don’t act now, all those natural and cultural resources are going to get closed to the public, sold off to Big Oil, blasted by climate change, or even devastated in a goddamn nuclear war. We can’t fulfill our mission without leading the revolution. And let’s face it, on our side we have not only science but also a vast cadre of trained survivalists, terrifying wild animals, forbidding terrain, and last but definitely not least, motherfucking active volcanoes. We can win this thing. So who’s with me?
[Enthusiastic shouts of “Hear, hear!” and “We are!” erupt.]
SHENANDOAH: Okay, okay. I just — I mean, I’m really close to DC. I’m kind of in the line of fire here.
LINCOLN MEMORIAL: I’m in DC and you don’t hear me complaining.
SHENANDOAH: Aren’t you a national monument? I thought this meeting was for parks.
LINCOLN MEMORIAL: Back off. I’m part of the National Mall and Memorial Parks. And look, I deserve to be here. Trump defiled me with a huge banner at his inauguration and he’s trying to dismantle my entire legacy. I’m on board for the revolution.
BADLANDS: We’re all friends here. We have to be a united front. That means everything administered by the National Park Service — monuments, memorials, whatever.
YOSEMITE: Please tell me you’re not inviting the National Forests.
BADLANDS: No. Of course not.
BADLANDS: Now that we’ve settled that, let’s brainstorm ideas for the fight ahead. There are a lot of you, and I don’t know what you all have to offer. No idea too small!
GRAND CANYON: If we can get Trump to the edge of me, maybe someone could push him over?
CRATER LAKE: Same here.
DEATH VALLEY: I can overheat him so that orange makeup runs and he dies of thirst.
BADLANDS: I don’t get the sense Trump is all that outdoorsy. We might need to go to him. Anyone else?
CHANNEL ISLANDS: I have a bald eagle breeding program. Those birds are fierce and we know they hate Trump’s guts. What say we get together an eagle squadron?
LASSEN: Hey, buddy, you’re not the only one with bald eagles. Just because I’m undervisited doesn’t mean—
BADLANDS: Calm down, calm down. Bald eagles are a great idea. We all know they’ve made a spectacular recovery and are no longer endangered, thanks to exactly the kind of environmental regulations our new leader wants to remove. I think almost all of us have bald eagles and can work together on that. Channel Islands, can you head up the bald eagle committee? Lassen, you put your head together with Volcanoes to talk about how to deploy your firepower.
VOLCANOES: How come Lassen gets to be in charge? That place hasn’t erupted for a century.
MOUNT RAINIER: And what about me?
BADLANDS: There’s room for all of you. It’s a cooperative committee. We’re comrades in the revolution here.
[Disgruntled murmurs subside.]
GRAND TETONS: Is participation mandatory? I — I’m a little concerned Trump is just going to grope me. I mean, you know what my name means, right?
BADLANDS: Don’t worry — he has plenty of other things to grope closer to home. But we’ll definitely take a zero-tolerance policy on that.
SHENANDOAH: I’m still not sure about this. What are we going to do against a developing authoritarian regime? We can’t just tweet.
YELLOWSTONE: I hear the Education Secretary has a thing about bears. Yosemite and I can coordinate on that front.
SHENANDOAH: You thinking grizzlies in schools?
YELLOWSTONE: Don’t be ridiculous. They wouldn’t go near a school. But unleash some bears in the Department of Education and that lady will fold like a cheap tent. A cheap tent with food in it, attacked by a bear.
KATMAI: [heatedly] Oh, sure, let Yosemite and Yellowstone take the glamorous bear detail. Come on. I know I’m way up in Alaska but if you want bears, do I ever have bears. I have a goddamn bearcam, for Christ’s sake!
YELLOWSTONE: Fine. You can do bears. But what am I going to do?
KATMAI: Dude, you’re the super famous one with Old Faithful. Plus I heard a rumor you’re sitting on top of a massive supervolcano. Doesn’t that beat having the nuclear codes? I’m sure you can figure something out, Mr. First National Park.
EVERGLADES: To switch gears for a minute, can we talk about how Trump wants to drain the swamp? I don’t like the sound of that.
BADLANDS: Understandable. You take charge of swamp defense. Oh, that reminds me. Anyone here abut or straddle a national boundary?
GLACIER, VOYAGEURS, and BIG BEND: Yes!
BADLANDS: Great. You three, you’re on border wall prevention. Do whatever it takes.
GLACIER: Sounds good.
BADLANDS: This is a great start. One more thing. Is Mount Rushmore here?
MOUNT RUSHMORE: Present!
BADLANDS: Hey, neighbor, good to see you. I have your revolutionary assignment ready.
MOUNT RUSHMORE: I’ll do anything. Sniper attacks? Guerrilla warfare? Shearing off giant rocks and catapulting them onto the White House?
BADLANDS: I love the enthusiasm. But you don’t need to be violent. All you have to do is stay where you are and remind the entire nation of what a president should actually be.