So the Gettysburg National Park has raised its fee. It has gone up from $7.50 to $10.50 and they didn't even announce the rate hike. Does the word "government" mean anything to you?
This step by the Park Service reminds me of what the Mets and the Yankees are doing to the season ticket holders (I know, but this is my frame of reference). Here in New York, the two teams are charging their fans thousands of dollars for the season tickets. Like the Mets and Yankee fans, the Park Service are taking advantage of us Civil War buffs. They know that we are going to visit no matter what happens. I have been to the park twice. There is one blogger I know of who visits four times a year. Yes, we are a captive audience. We are all going to bring our kids to Gettysburg in the hope that they'll catch the Civil War bug like us. We are ready to indoctrinate.
Though the Park Service was high-handed, perhaps it was a necessary evil. The economic times affect even the history buffs. People have less money to travel. In addition, with the government swimming in a sea of red ink, I'm sure funding the National Park Service is not a high priority in Washington right now. That leaves the fee hike as their remaining option.
However, if the Service continues with it, the number of visitors will diminish. We the faithful will keep coming. It's the incidental or one-time people who might be driven away. That is the true risk here.
What is your view? Do you think this is an exercise in high-handed government?