A Maryland-based Ku Klux Klan has been granted a permit to hold an event on Oct. 5, on the battlefield’s grounds, at Gettysburg National Military Park, park officials reported.” The special-use permit was approved for a Maryland-based KKK group to exercise its First Amendment right”.
“As custodians of land owned by the American people, the National Park Service has a responsibility to make the land available for exercising those rights,” a statement from the parks said.
The national park, located in central Pennsylvania near the Maryland border, was the site of the Battle of Gettysburg, considered a turning point in the Civil War. In total, nearly 8,000 soldiers died and tens of thousands were injured.
They planed to stage a three-hour event just a stone’s throw from the national cemetery. The rally’s eight participants were going to protest President Obama’s immigration policies, among other issues, according to the Baltimore Sun.
But letter park officials said it could not take place because all National Parks have been closed because of the federal government shutdown.
Gettysburg National Military Park has rescinded all permits for special events, including the October 5 First Amendment demonstration,” the park said in a statement.