March 31, 1997
FDR BURNED FAMILY FARMS!
Your home is your castle, right? And no one can take it away,can they?
It is, and they can't, unless they happen to be the US government and they happen to think that a certain stretch of mountains might be prettier without your humble home.
As the FDR memorial is prepared for its May dedication, some people are looking back a little more closely at Roosevelt's handiwork. And it's not looking too pretty on close examination.
We would hope that forced relocations of innocent citizens is reserved for totalitarian countries. But -- in addition to the infamous relocation of Japanese-Americans during WWII -- FDR ordered the removal of hundreds of Appalachian families and then put their farms to the torch in order to create Shenandoah National Park in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains.
As Arnold Via remembers it, "one day a government man knocked on the door and said 'We're taking your place, here's a check.'" Some families resisted until the government came and burned their farms and homes.
(Source: USA Today.)
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