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What all geocachers and gun owners have in common


BadAndy
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In Ohio there were 13 permit systems put in place in 2004 or earlier. In 2005 there were no new permit systems, and one ban reversal. In 2006, three permit systems were added -- most notably, the State Historical Society, who placed a series of caches at its facilities and requested that other cachers ask permission before doing the same thing. In 2007, three permit systems were added. Thus far in 2008, two permit systems were added.

 

 

Using these two states as examples, I am not seeing support for the position you're advocating. Please provide that support.

 

I believe you've already proven my point. By your estimates, there has been an increase in the number of new bans/permits of over 60% in Ohio in less than 3 years. The statewide total of 21 separate permit systems include 3 that even you characterize as draconian.

 

I doubt that Ohio is the leader in this stat. How do some of the other states compare? Are their any standouts? I'm just finding out that my new home state of Colorado has quite a few local permit systems in place.

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Columbus parks is moving to a permit system as well... I've been in contact with them alot about it recently.

I'd almost be willing to bet they copy the metro parks permit system, but who knows... I hope they will be less restrictive. We'll hopefully see by end of this month.

 

 

In Ohio there were 13 permit systems put in place in 2004 or earlier. In 2005 there were no new permit systems, and one ban reversal. In 2006, three permit systems were added -- most notably, the State Historical Society, who placed a series of caches at its facilities and requested that other cachers ask permission before doing the same thing. In 2007, three permit systems were added. Thus far in 2008, two permit systems were added.

 

 

Using these two states as examples, I am not seeing support for the position you're advocating. Please provide that support.

 

I believe you've already proven my point. By your estimates, there has been an increase in the number of new bans/permits of over 60% in Ohio in less than 3 years. The statewide total of 21 separate permit systems include 3 that even you characterize as draconian.

 

I doubt that Ohio is the leader in this stat. How do some of the other states compare? Are their any standouts? I'm just finding out that my new home state of Colorado has quite a few local permit systems in place.

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While I am, (almost), absolutely opposed to any firearms regulation, due to the fact that they inherently target the innocent, I'm not sure that caching makes a reasonable comparison. The United States has a document roughly 200 years old that grants firearm ownership rights to its citizens, and this Amendment has been the primary tool in the NRA's fight to protect our rights. However, we have no geocaching Amendment, ergo, (by definition), geocaching is not a "right".

 

Why isn't it? The Constitution states specific rights, but does not delineate those as the _only_ rights.

 

There are plenty of rights not delineated by the Constitution. Use of public lands? Partially addressed there, obviously addressed by our society.

 

If nothing else, it falls under "free assembly", and is therefore a protected right.

 

As someone earlier said.. yeah.. find the obnoxious cacher (we all know a few) and somehow make them stop being obnoxious. Perhaps I'm lucky.. in my area, the "evidence" of caching is less garbage.. but I with a few exceptions, the local crew is good. I know other places are less than stellar. And it's usually one bad apple, too.

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Why isn't it?

Because a "right", by legal definition, is an activity or privilege protected by rule of law.

 

There are plenty of rights not delineated by the Constitution. Use of public lands?

That's not a "right", that's a privilege, noted by the fact that it can be withdrawn at any time, at whim, by the land manager, with no due process or recourse.

 

If nothing else, it falls under "free assembly", and is therefore a protected right.

My stumbling about in a swamp does not meet the Supreme Court's interpretation of "free assembly". Neither does my pulling up next to a lamp post. An geocaching event might qualify, but even then, it's the gathering together which would be protected, not the cache page or logs generated by said event. Once you remove the ability to read about and/or log your participation at a gathering on the GC servers, it doesn't quite fit the common definition of geocaching event.

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.........You should be leaving the geocache site Exactly as you found it. This includes not ripping things apart to find it.

 

Any true lover of the outdoors goes one better than this. LEAVE IT BETTER! Take the trash you discover, what you can carry anyway, out with you. It may not be someone left it there, wind moves that stuff too. In any case, leave it clean. Take extra care with campfires, don't drive nails into trees and leave them. Not every person is responsible enough to take care of our countryside, and some just don't care. We need to elevate ourselves above the crowd.

 

As an after thought, why not when leaving a bag of trash in a container that park officials will later empty, leave a tag or label on it letting them know it was a cacher that picked up, and that you appreciate the use of the park, campground, area, whatever.

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What about, "The pursuit of Happiness"?

I think that's onea dem dere Rights thingies.

When I'm happy, I smile. When I find a cache, I get a smiley. Not too big a leap, eh?

 

I just got back from scoping out a local park for some cache placements I'll be doing tonight or tomorrow. I've been thinking about it for months and working on cool caches about as long. I finally got up the gumption yesterday and went to the township building and met with the local parks guy. We've had email contact happening for a while and he sent me a pdf of the approval form months ago. I was still hesitant and even placed my first 2 caches outside his jurisdiction (and closer to home).

Well...I gotta tell ya, I now see my hesitation (and the original premise of this thread?) as kinda ridiculous now.

I walked in and the dude was totally excited to see me and get a chance to talk caching. He's a huge enthusiast of the sport. He said one of his goals is to have at least one cache in every park in the township. He talked about other agencies that have hidden them on their properties and encouraged cachers to do so as well. He's also on the inside trying to change the opinions of the other people like him pointing out the benefits of bringing people on-site as well as being able to yay or nay specific locations.

It was pretty much what Keystone was describing.

I'd rather fill out a form and get approval, rather than see my cache being blown up by the bomb squad on the evening news or picked up by the cops when someone is caught finding it.

Sure, I'm new so I missed the days when Geocaching was truly covert. But the cat's out of the bag and there are over half a million out there and it seems that not everyone plays with such high standards.

The first thing I asked the Parks guy was, "Is there anyplace you don't want caches?" He said, "No, there are no ecologically sensitive areas that would be a problem."

Personally, I'd be pretty bummed out if I placed one somewhere and the area got trashed or the geotrail had some kind of negative impact on the area.

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From my perspective you are either adding value, you are not adding value or you are not communicating that you are adding value.

 

If you organize your CITO programs to show you are adding value it's a good thing. Telling the local park officials that you are removing trash while caching, letting the local officials know how many park permits were sold to local cachers for park entry that may not have otherwise been sold.

 

I can't speak for the trails in question but how many times do you see a sign stating not to leave a trail yet we all do to get a cache. Maybe something as simple as listing a location on the trail where it might be best to leave a trail if it is required to get at a cache. While this may leave a path for those to come it doesn't leave 30 paths where everybody has taken their own route. To put it bluntly the tree huggers don't want you off the traile destroying habitat and they have the money and the clout to get their way. Working with in the system makes more sense when you are the minority and don't have the proper backing.

 

Doing some of these things may make caching less challenging in some fashion but more challenging in others.

 

If geocaching does not add value to our parks then it will most likely go away. That value can be in trash pick up, permits sold any number of things but you must project that value and make it known.

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From my perspective you are either adding value, you are not adding value or you are not communicating that you are adding value....

 

I understand what you are saying, but this is exactly backwards.

 

The NPS is the one on the hook for adding value. If the NPS adds no value over say the BLM managing the land in a more raw state the NPS serves no purpose.

 

Users of the lands, really don't add direct value. They are a guage of the value the NPS has created. Thus when the NPS starts banning uses that removes value. They only gain value in denying legitmate uses if that increases the value to others. Strip Mining being an easy to understand value. Strip mining doesn't "play well with other uses". Ban Stip mining on NPS lands and you preserve the beauty and integrity of the land. Ban caching, and you haven't done anything but make your NPS lands have less utility and value to this nation by precluding a legitimate use that "plays well with others".

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Maybe something as simple as listing a location on the trail where it might be best to leave a trail if it is required to get at a cache. While this may leave a path for those to come it doesn't leave 30 paths where everybody has taken their own route.

It's been my experience that, 30 people, leaving a trail at different points, will have a much lesser social trail impact than 30 people leaving the trail at the same point. That's why I can't, in good conscience, be a proponent of policies requiring that caches be placed close to established, marked trails.

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From my perspective you are either adding value, you are not adding value or you are not communicating that you are adding value....

 

I understand what you are saying, but this is exactly backwards.

 

The NPS is the one on the hook for adding value. If the NPS adds no value over say the BLM managing the land in a more raw state the NPS serves no purpose.

 

Users of the lands, really don't add direct value. They are a guage of the value the NPS has created. Thus when the NPS starts banning uses that removes value. They only gain value in denying legitmate uses if that increases the value to others. Strip Mining being an easy to understand value. Strip mining doesn't "play well with other uses". Ban Stip mining on NPS lands and you preserve the beauty and integrity of the land. Ban caching, and you haven't done anything but make your NPS lands have less utility and value to this nation by precluding a legitimate use that "plays well with others".

 

Most gov't agencies don't add value. They do however have the control and the power just as NPS does. That means they are in control and it is our job to show we are beneficial to them.

 

As far as 30 people on one trail vs 30 separate trails you are correct. It is my opinion however that damaging a narrow swath often times is looked upon with more favor than damaging a much wider swath.

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I normally agree with many posts sent by the OP (Bad Andy), but in this case, I must strongly disagree with his stated doomsday perspective and also his "call to action, we must mobilize" perspective. First, much as Clan Riffster wrote:...

That larger post was the long way to say. "There are bad apples that must be dealt with lest we all pay the price. The NPS has it's own bad apples.

 

While 100 caches in one fell swoop apparently is nothing new given the prior rate of attack was on here and there may not cause alarm with Keystone, it's a wake up call. The question "what changed?" is valid. Something changed for the worse. Losing 100 at once many of which are fine by the rules, wasn't a good change by any stretch.

 

Some of the other arguments that were made can be summed as this. "There is no right to freedom".

Caching is a freedom we enjoy. True there is no constituational right to caching, or freedom for that matter. Instead freedom is a principal. Worth fighting for as they are taken away one by one in every faucet of our lives. They are being taken away. A lot of us have to ask permission to paint our houses a different color.

 

I flat out can't march with any group that defends the unessary loss of freedom with an argument that can be summed up as "it's not a right".

 

I agree w/ 'Renegade Knight' ! I believe the worst is yet to come!

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I live in an Eastern State, and I've seen land managers move from permits to "place caches freely", from asking for a lot of information on each hide, to a request that the cacher simply tell a ranger when a new hide is placed.

 

Just a bit of counter to the OPs original concept. And thank you badinfluence for one perfect example of how to proceed. CITO is a real and powerful tool.

 

Which isn't to say that there aren't some individuals with real or imaginary regulatory power mightily armed with misinformation re geocaching, or that a National Geocaching Association is a bad idea.

 

The Florida Geocaching Association would join other state associations in a National Association. If someone stepped up to do the work, I suspect that many of the state associations and other regional groups would gladly contribute. Applying for IRA tax exempt status costs $300, for instance, and most states will have filing fees for corporate status, not that such formal organization is a requirement, but it sure helps legitimize a group to have that legal status.

 

So, Bad Andy, you ready to get the ball rolling?

 

I believe it's TIME for a National Geocaching Association! Certainly we have some retired Lawyers, CEO's, VP's, etc., who LOVE Geocaching and would have the time and EXPERIENCE to lead such an effort!

 

Now at 61-yo I still work full-time, but YES, I would volunteer to help in some way. I am not rich, but would be willing to pay a membership to such a National Association, to help with operating expenses, just as I do at Geocaching.Com.

 

I any subject the voice of MANY yields a better outcome than the voice of a few. Look at AARP!

 

It will take time to get a National Association started, so we MUST start NOW! To get a jump start, we can bring the memberships of all LOCAL Geocaching Clubs together and get a real jump-start on a National Geocaching Association.

 

Well, lets roll up our`sleeves and get to work!

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This thread isn't about whether geocaching is a right, privilege or anything else.

Perhaps. It certainly seems to have drifted that way, with folks claiming "rights" that don't exist.

 

That's the dangerous mindset that seems to be rearing its ugly head more and more these days. We are NOT dependent upon the government to grant us rights (nor the Constitution; it merely spells out a few of the basic ones). Our rights are inherent, not token bread crumbs tossed to us by a stuffed suit.

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Our rights are inherent, not token bread crumbs tossed to us by a stuffed suit.

Absolutely. We get them simply by being here. However, there remains the question of what "rights" are inherent.

 

A while back I had to intervene when a customer was rejected on her auto purchase application. The customer claimed her "rights", (which she apparently felt were inherent), were being violated because the dealership wouldn't sell her a Hummer, due to her phenomenally horrendous credit rating. What was quirky was, she couldn't articulate which "right" had been violated.

 

Another incident involved an act of criminal mischief, in which rocks were thrown at cars from the general direction of a block party. I walked up to the area, and a gentleman walked off his yard, meeting me in the street, claiming I was violating his "rights" by talking to him. I thought perhaps he might've had some odd interpretation of either the 1st or 4th Amendment, so I attempted to clarify this by explaining case law, and reminding him that he had approached me voluntarily, and as such, was free to leave at any time, but he still insisted I was violating his "rights" simply by being there.

 

So, is there a "right" to buy a Hummer, regardless of how much $$$ a person has?

Is there a "right" preventing law enforcement officers from making casual encounters with citizens?

 

A thing becomes a "right" when the full power of the law can be brought against a violator.

It's usually stuffed shirts, such as legislators and judges, who accomplish this.

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I believe it's TIME for a National Geocaching Association! Certainly we have some retired Lawyers, CEO's, VP's, etc., who LOVE Geocaching and would have the time and EXPERIENCE to lead such an effort!

I dunno. Ya think lawyers are nerdy enough for this game? Accountants, definitely. Comic book salesmen, absolutely. Lawyers? :D

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A thing becomes a "right" when the full power of the law can be brought against a violator.

 

I like the argument of the philosopher Jamie Whyte who suggests that if you have a right to something, then everyone else has the obligation to act in such a way as to not prevent you from having it.

 

For example, if you have the right to life, then I have an obligation not to murder you. (Depending on your point of view, you could argue that this means the judicial system doesn't have the right to execute you either, but let's not go down that road here.)

 

This means that if a politician says you have the right to, say, health care, that someone somewhere is obliged to provide you with health care (regardless of your ability to pay, because it's a right). That doesn't seem to be the American model, so (again, using Mr. Whyte's reasoning), it would not be correct to say that "Americans have the right to health care (period)", without making reference to the ability to pay. (Again, this is not intended to open a topic about health care...)

 

On that basis, do we (Americans or not) have the general right to place caches? I would say not. The owner or custodian of the land has (in general) no obligation to allow you to "do what you want" on their land. For a start, every wilderness area seems to have a sign up saying that you can't drink beer there, even if you do take the container back home with you and wait until you get to a gas station to recycle it (the container or the beer :D). If they can impose limitations on such a non-impact activity as lifting a can to your mouth and drinking from it, I guess you're going to have trouble convincing anyone that you have the right to leave an arbitrary container in the woods.

 

Now, do Americans have the right to place virtual caches (assuming they can find a site to list them)? I suspect you might have more success with that approach. I personally can't see why placement of a virtual cache wouldn't be covered by the First Amendment.

Edited by sTeamTraen
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Now, do Americans have the right to place virtual caches (assuming they can find a site to list them)? I suspect you might have more success with that approach. I personally can't see why placement of a virtual cache wouldn't be covered by the First Amendment.

Armchair virtuals may be covered by the First Amendment, but I would suspect that private property rights may allow a property owner to require you got permission to go on his property to find a answer or take a verification photo. Maybe one could "place" a virtual cache but unless you can log it from your armchair you have no inherent right to find a virtual cache. :D

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As a cache reviewer, I am familiar with geocaching regulations at every level of government, both in the states where I review caches, and in other states where I hear news from my fellow reviewers. From this perspective, I disagree with the premise of the OP. I don't see a trend towards banning caches. At worst, the current trend is for county and city park systems to wake up and realize that they might want to have some sort of notification and approval process for caches in their parks. My home county is a current example. There's no form to fill out, and thus far the requests have a 100% approval rate.

 

Looking around me, the state park systems in Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Maryland and West Virginia all have mature permission procedures that have been in place for years and are functioning smoothly. I see state parks hiding series of caches and sponsoring contests to attract geocachers to their parks. I see Pennsylvania State Game Land managers hiding caches on our vast hunting lands. A few years ago, we worried that this land manager might ban geocaching. I challenge the OP to step forward with specific examples of land managers in the Eastern US who have banned geocaching in the past year.

 

All the trends I'm seeing stand in stark contrast to the National Park Service. Their anti-geocaching stance is nothing new. I've been carefully examining cache placements near the Appalachian Trail since 2003. I've watched as the ATC representatives have slowly picked off caches over the past several years. The only "new" development was the request for archiving 100 caches all at once.

 

So, I see no reason for alarm. All I see is a need to work with and educate one anachronistic land manager whose view of geocaching remains grounded on false perceptions developed many years ago.

 

Minnesota, the socialist state where almost nothing is allowed, is an example of the opposite of the OPs premise. The Minnesota State Park system used to ban geocaching altogether. This last year, they saw the light and opened it up, with an approval process of course. They even ran a promotion this year to promote geocaching in the state park system, the Minnesota State Park Geocaching History Challenge.

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...I believe it's TIME for a National Geocaching Association! Certainly we have some retired Lawyers, CEO's, VP's, etc., who LOVE Geocaching and would have the time and EXPERIENCE to lead such an effort!...

I've been working on that for years. Just now I've pulled the one website asking for help, and haven't yet put up the new one even though I have the server space (Websites are not my strong point). Meanwhile long term sustainable interest is hard to find. But I keep pluging away as time and life permit.

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I believe it's TIME for a National Geocaching Association! Certainly we have some retired Lawyers, CEO's, VP's, etc., who LOVE Geocaching and would have the time and EXPERIENCE to lead such an effort!

I dunno. Ya think lawyers are nerdy enough for this game? Accountants, definitely. Comic book salesmen, absolutely. Lawyers? :P

:huh:

 

geocachers are not nerds. they are tech geeks who like to walk in the woods and hike.

 

i've met keystone and he is definitely not a nerd.

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im one of several geocachers in this area with ccw permits.

 

around here its still pretty easy to hide a cache, theres a blanket approval for laying caches. im probably going against the majority here but i would like to see a small fee to lay each cache. ive noticed alot of caches around this area that are missing or in need of some form of care. im pretty new to caching my self but i think alot of this has to do with people who are new to the sport laying caches and then moving on. if they had to pay 5-10 bucks a cache then maby the quality of caches will prevail over the quanity. i would rather see 25 well placed and thought out caches around my city than the 200 micro's that seem to be everywhere.

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Ummm.. perhaps I'm late to the party.

 

The Constitution features the 2nd Amendment.

 

Somehow, I don't see Geocaching as a _RIGHT_ as much as a privelege, and in that way, I don't think the comparison in the title of the thread is terribly valid.

 

Not that I don't think an advocacy board/group/whatever wouldn't be a great idea. It would.

 

However, part of that would be policing our own ranks to discourage the sorts of behaviors that typically reflect badly on the rest of us. Bad cache placement, bushwhacking with a machete, etc etc.

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...Somehow, I don't see Geocaching as a _RIGHT_ as much as a privelege,...

 

Caching is a freedom we enjoy. When you use the word Privilege there is an implication that it comes with obligations, and the right to enjoy the privilege was granted by a higher authority and thus can be taken away. It’s why states work very hard to call Driving a Privilege instead of a right or freedom. As a privilege you can enforce how it’s earned. Then you can take it away.

 

Caching is a freedom. Enjoying our freedoms is a right reserved to the people. It falls under the "Right to Life Liberty and the Persuit of happyness" concept in the declaration of independence. It's indirectly preserved in the constition in that if it's not covered someowere else by law, or constition in state or federal government we are allowed to enjoy the freedom.

 

Government here isn't "Mother may I?" . It's "Yes you may unless we regulate otherwise".

 

Bad Andy's entire point can be directly correlated to how thick all the laws, rules, and regs would stack up to be if printed out. Each year the stack gets thicker, not thinner. Thus the unregulated freedoms we enjoy are less and less. It's why we have to push to keep our freedoms on every front they are being taken away on. We are losing them in every faucet of our lives.

 

In my highschool I could ask a girl on a date. In my kids high school, that could be sexual harrasment. It's shifed from a rite of passage that we all have to cross, to both the right of passage and a maze of regulation that can be used against you if you don't tackle it "just so".

Edited by Renegade Knight
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But it obviously _is_ a privelege, as we can be told "no". And there's no legal recourse we have against it.

 

your local or state park can say "no geocaching" and you cannot do it.

 

Therefore it's not a freedom. Sorry, I know you'd like to believe that, but it isn't so.

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But it obviously _is_ a privelege, as we can be told "no". And there's no legal recourse we have against it.

 

your local or state park can say "no geocaching" and you cannot do it.

 

Therefore it's not a freedom. Sorry, I know you'd like to believe that, but it isn't so.

 

It looks like you may not understand what freedom really is. One rule of freedom can be summed up as "Your freedom ends where my nose begins." You can ban caching on your property. I can allow it on mine. I can't allow it on yours and you can't ban it on mine. Freedom is what we enjoy, it's not what we impose on the other. Yes the park can ban caching within their own boundaries. They can't ban it on your land. Nor can they ban you from enjoying it if by chance the arrow has you crossing their grounds to a cache on someone elses lands.

 

If you had to take test to be a lisenced cacher, and only then could you practice caching, then it could be considered a privilidge and regulated into worthlessness.

 

As an aside. A freedom is enjoyable by all. A privilige by those who prove worthy, or have earned it.

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I'll add my name to the "Caching is a privilege" camp, as opposed to being a freedom.

 

(Note: By the term "Caching" I am referring to the game played here, on this server)

 

Local governments can forbid that the game be played on properties they control.

State governments could conceivably outlaw the game everywhere within their boundaries.

Federal organizations can outlaw the game within areas they control.

Players must have an account here, (or TC, or NC, etc) to get waypoints for cache locations. That account can be banned for bad behavior.

 

True, you would still be free to hide an ammo can on your property, and you could even invite your friends to come hunt for it, but without a host site such as Groundspeak, it would no longer be caching as I know it. Since we, (as cachers), can lose our ability to play this particular game at any time, I'd have to lean toward this being a privilege.

 

Hunting the cache in your yard, would qualify in my book as a freedom.

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I'll add my name to the "Caching is a privilege" camp, as opposed to being a freedom.

 

(Note: By the term "Caching" I am referring to the game played here, on this server)

 

Local governments can forbid that the game be played on properties they control.

State governments could conceivably outlaw the game everywhere within their boundaries.

Federal organizations can outlaw the game within areas they control.

Players must have an account here, (or TC, or NC, etc) to get waypoints for cache locations. That account can be banned for bad behavior.

 

True, you would still be free to hide an ammo can on your property, and you could even invite your friends to come hunt for it, but without a host site such as Groundspeak, it would no longer be caching as I know it. Since we, (as cachers), can lose our ability to play this particular game at any time, I'd have to lean toward this being a privilege.

 

Hunting the cache in your yard, would qualify in my book as a freedom.

 

This logic works on all things from walking with a friend, to enjoying a play. It works on all things not already regulated. It works on freedoms, privlidges, and anything inbetween.

 

It comes down to either you believe people should be a free as possible or you believe in the unfettered right of the government to infringe in things like caching because freedom itself holds no value and thus all things are privlidges which of course are granted by the government's generostity.

Edited by Renegade Knight
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...Local governments can forbid that the game be played on properties they control.

State governments could conceivably outlaw the game everywhere within their boundaries.

Federal organizations can outlaw the game within areas they control.

Players must have an account here, (or TC, or NC, etc) to get waypoints for cache locations. That account can be banned for bad behavior....Hunting the cache in your yard, would qualify in my book as a freedom.

 

Looking at this you are rolling up two thoughts into a freedom.

 

The abiliy of the government to remove a freedom doesn't change that it's a freedom now.

The ability of this site to ban someone doesn't change that caching exists in a multitude of ways and I'm free to enjoy them all. If they all go away, I'm free to start my own site.

 

A privildge in simple terms is something you are not allowed to do unless something else happens. Usually proving you are worthy, or joining a certain "club". Then it's normally regulated. You can't drive until you pass a test. Driving is held as a privildge. You can't practice Law until you pass the BAR. Practicing law is a privilidge. You can't enjoy base privildges until you join the military.

 

Rights are things that are so important they obligate us (and especialy our government) all to observe them for all others. We have a right to a trial by jury, I have an obligation to serve on a jury when called. We have a right to free speech. It obligates the government to allow it. (We do not have a right to be heard, that would obligate us to serve our turn as audience).

 

All of these can be taken away. Some are harder to take away than others. Freedom for lack of any other way to convey it is what's left after we pay our dues to the laws of the land, and the rights of everyone. For now that includes caching in the larger sence, even if land managers poke little holes in the idea on the lans they conrol. It's just like frisbee. Yeah, you can ban it, but I can still buy them and play it anywhere where it wasn't important enough for some doofie to pas the anti frisbee law.

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Given that you cannot cite to any example besides North Carolina (which I offered), I renew my objection to the basic premise you're advancing. You are stating perception as fact:

 

It's running rampant, especially in the eastern states. More and more govt controlled lands are limiting and regulating and banning geocaching.

 

Want some actual facts? There are three county park systems in Ohio which banned geocaching many years ago. Two of the three are reconsidering their positions, thanks to the efforts of local geocachers. At the state level, caches are not allowed in Ohio wildlife areas and in Ohio nature preserves. Yet, caches are welcomed in Ohio state parks and state forests -- so much so that the agency itself hides dozens of caches and sponsors events every year. There are no other bans on geocaching at the state or local level in Ohio. The existing bans have been in place for more than five years.

 

In West Virginia, there is one small city where the Mayor has purported to ban geocaching. There are no other bans on geocaching at the state or local level in West Virginia.

 

Shall I continue state by state?

 

Hey Keystone ... not that I know what the heck I'm talking about .. but WV WMA (Wildlife Management Areas) do not permit/allow geocaches. I talked with all the PTB on the matter when I wanted to place a couple of caches in Brooke County (Wellsburg area). This may or may not relate to the parks & such that you are referring to. It's still supposedly "public land" ~Glenn

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It comes down to either you believe people should be a free as possible or you believe in the unfettered right of the government to infringe in things like caching because freedom itself holds no value and thus all things are privileges which of course are granted by the government's generosity.

This doesn't quite work for me. You see, I believe that there is nothing so important as an individual's personal freedom. Just because I am somewhat educated in legal jurisprudence doesn't relegate me to to the dregs who think all powers come from the government.

 

A privilege in simple terms is something you are not allowed to do unless something else happens.

Sounds like you're describing geocaching in its currently accepted and most popular form.

To play this game, here, in the way it was/is intended, you must create an account. That account can be taken away at any time, if TPTB feel it's warranted. If geocaching were a "right", you would have the entire power of the legal system behind you to ensure your right was returned. Since your account can be wiped out with naught but a few mouse clicks, rendering you unable to participate in this game, and leaving you no recourse, I wouldn't even call it a freedom.

 

Geocaching, in this particular aspect, must therefor be a privilege.

 

The same applies to playing this game at TC and NC.

You're kinda stuck in the mud without an account, which you can lose at the whims of folks who you have no control over.

 

Naturally, you have the freedom to toss an ammo can in your yard and hunt it with your GPSr. You can even have your kids/spouse/friends/etc move it around so you can find it over and over again. But would chasing the same ammo can hither and yon across your front yard really meet your inner definition of geocaching?

 

Rights are things that are so important they obligate us (and especially our government) all to observe them for all others. Trial by jury, Right to free speech, etc

All of these can be taken away.

But they cannot be taken away without due process. Ergo, we are protected from the whims of tyrants.

Your account here, as well as your account at TC & NC, has no such protection.

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This thread isn't about whether geocaching is a right, privilege or anything else.

 

It's about the similarities of tactics used by Local, State and Federal agencies to target a law abiding group of citizens.

 

Sorry. I cannot think of anything I have in common with gunowners.

Well. I think they're weird. They think I'm weird. Hey. I don't sit up in a tree for hours in freezing weather. I keep moving!

We do use the same trails. But we maintain them! They don't. Until recently, that included the AT. Yep. I've seen hundreds of hunters on the AT in Pa, NY, and NJ.

I think they're silly, but mostly harmless. Well, except for the guy with the crossbow, standing under the No Hunting Sign on the AT. He had me a bit worried!

The current Supreme Court has interpreted the 2nd Ammendment to make your question moot.

How about other groups whose rights and privileges are being undermined? Women who wish to have an abortion, for example. That is a Constitutional protected right. Yet, many wish to eliminate that right. Smokers? Smoking is a privilege. Yet that privilege is being undermined these days. There is a minority for you to stick up for!

Gun owners? I have nothing in common with them.

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We do use the same trails. But we maintain them! They don't.

That is so monstrously inaccurate as to defy description.

Prior to becoming a Tupperware hunter, I was a bow hunter for decades. Although, as a deer hunter, I didn't have a witty acronym for the process, I've been practicing CITO for the past 40 years or so. During that time, I was active with several local hunting organizations who regularly participated in trail maintenance, shelter construction, bridge construction and tree clearing. Also, thanx to the Pittman Robertson Act, hunters have paid an 11% excise tax on all rifles, shotguns and ammunition, since 1937, sending over 4 billion dollars to the states, earmarked for conservation purposes, to include hunter education, land acquisition and wildlife management. Since 1970, an excise tax of 10% was added to all handgun and archery purchases.

 

To claim that hunters, as a whole, don't maintain trails, is both silly and derisive.

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It comes down to either you believe people should be a free as possible or you believe in the unfettered right of the government to infringe in things like caching because freedom itself holds no value and thus all things are privileges which of course are granted by the government's generosity.

This doesn't quite work for me. You see, I believe that there is nothing so important as an individual's personal freedom. Just because I am somewhat educated in legal jurisprudence doesn't relegate me to to the dregs who think all powers come from the government....

 

Governments assume power. People grant them that power. Or Vice Versa. The end result is the same.

 

I don't think we are all that far apart on reality. Mostly we seem to be arguing the right words to describe that reality.

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I have set up a CITO Country Road Series of caches in the area I live in. It has had great success so far. I live in a smaller town outside of St. Louis. This post has inspired me to contact my local Suburban Journal in an attempt to get some positive publicity for geocaching. Without a doubt POSITIVE PUBLICITY is our number one weapon to have communities ENCOURAGE geocaching. I can show them proof positive evidence that geocaching is good for our community because along with the series I have set up a Puzzle cache which requires cachers to find 5 of the CITO caches and post a picture of their trash on the cache page. Its up to us to give a postive impression that greatly outweighs the negative impression of a few. I believe that is why the NRA is so successful. It is an organization that highlights those of us who are RESPONSIBLE gun owners as opposed to the hoodlums who own guns illegally.

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This thread isn't about whether geocaching is a right, privilege or anything else.

 

It's about the similarities of tactics used by Local, State and Federal agencies to target a law abiding group of citizens.

 

Sorry. I cannot think of anything I have in common with gunowners.

Well. I think they're weird. They think I'm weird. Hey. I don't sit up in a tree for hours in freezing weather. I keep moving!

We do use the same trails. But we maintain them! They don't. Until recently, that included the AT. Yep. I've seen hundreds of hunters on the AT in Pa, NY, and NJ.

I think they're silly, but mostly harmless. Well, except for the guy with the crossbow, standing under the No Hunting Sign on the AT. He had me a bit worried!

The current Supreme Court has interpreted the 2nd Ammendment to make your question moot.

How about other groups whose rights and privileges are being undermined? Women who wish to have an abortion, for example. That is a Constitutional protected right. Yet, many wish to eliminate that right. Smokers? Smoking is a privilege. Yet that privilege is being undermined these days. There is a minority for you to stick up for!

Gun owners? I have nothing in common with them.

 

Lets try this again......

 

This thread isn't about whether geocaching is a right, privilege or anything else.

 

It is also not about Hunting, Stereotypes, Abortion, Crossbows or Smoking.

 

It's about the similarities of tactics used by Local, State and Federal agencies to target a law abiding group of citizens.

 

As much as it may pain you to admit, you do have things in common with gun owners, and please stay on topic.

Edited by BadAndy
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It's about the similarities of tactics used by Local, State and Federal agencies to target a law abiding group of citizens.

 

As much as it may pain you to admit, you do have things in common with gun owners, and please stay on topic.

You may believe that the government is out to target you. I don't believe that. I believe that these agencies are simply enforcing the laws that already exist. In that way drivers, pedestrians, airplane pilots, ham radio operators, doctors, lawyers, and bankers have just as much in common with geocachers as gun owners. You do not have the right to hide a geocache anywhere you want. And that includes on public property that is managed for particular purposes by a federal, state, or local agency. Within the current laws these agencies can determine where caches are not allowed just as a local police agency can determine who can have a concealed carry permit. Gun owners in fact may be a little different because of the 2nd Amendment and the recent Supreme Court ruling that limits local government from passing laws that essentially result in a total ban on guns. The gun owners at least have a majority on the Supreme Court now to make sure the laws don't go too far; I doubt you'd find many Justices that would support an argument that the government can't have laws regarding property left behind on government land. Certainly, there may be bureaucrats that go beyond what the law allows. It might be that the NPS supervisor for the Appalachian Trail is trying to exert the NPS authority to ban caches in areas where he doesn't have this authority. My guess if that if some bureaucrat tried to limit gun sales beyond where the law allowed him to, the NRA and other organizations would be challenging that. Perhaps Geocaching.com and local geocaching groups in the area are investigating what authority the NPS has over the caches they asked to be archived. They may take a less confrontational approach than the NRA sometimes does, but I believe cache owners are free to challenge the NPS decisions and if the NPS supervisor agrees that this cache is not in his jurisdiction or is overturned by a superior we may yet see some caches unarchived.

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