Back in July, 11 Greenpeace members climbed Mt. Rushmore to hang a banner protesting global warming. The challenges of climbing Roosevelt's Nose aside, it seems a foolhardy endeavor—but in exchange for pleading guilty, the protesters got the relatively lenient sentence of a $460 fine plus 100 hours of community service. One member will serve two days in jail for prior trespassing convictions.
Officials hoped for higher sentencing, but say the incident was instructive in highlighting security gaps at the national monument. If possible, the activists will complete their community service at Mt. Rushmore. The Greenpeace members insist that the stunt was necessary to turn national attention to global warming.
"I think that our message did get out there, and I think that people heard awareness about global warming, and I think that we will continue to fight to bring this issue to the forefront in the global community," Greenpeace activist Jessica Miller said.
When you think about it, the climbers kind of got a sweet deal. $460 is cheaper than a guided climb up Rainier; of course, you've got all that community service to do, but I think I'd still sign up for it—as long as I'm not cleaning the toilets at Camp Schurman.