In order to fund Trump’s Fourth of July extravaganza (he is calling “Salute to America”) on the National Mall, he has taken $2.5 million from money that was devoted to improving and maintaining our country’s national parks.
Trump will be the first president to create such a celebration for Independence Day and will be using far more than the $2.5 million that was allocated for parks. According to National Park Service Deputy Director Denis P. Galvin, the previous 4th of July celebrations had a total budget of $2 million. But this $2.5 is just a small fraction of what Trump’s extravaganza will cost.
HOLD THE DATE! We will be having one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C., on July 4th. It will be called “A Salute To America” and will be held at the Lincoln Memorial. Major fireworks display, entertainment and an address by your favorite President, me!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2019
Trump plans on rolling out military hardware like tanks and infantry vehicles which will remain on display during the festivities, will be scheduling flyovers which cost tens of thousands of dollars per hour, is promising the “biggest ever” fireworks display, and will be giving a speech (which no prior president has done), which is a huge factor in this hefty budget.
“This is a breach of trust with the public. The public pays parks fees to fix national parks and for educational programs, not the president’s parade,” says National Parks Conservation Association President and CEO Theresa Pierno.
The president got the idea of celebrating in this fashion after experiencing France’s Bastille Day in Paris a couple of years ago. He had pitched a similar event for Veterans Day but did not follow through after much criticism.