Ah, young love. You meet a guy, go on a few dates, fall madly head-over-heels in love, then go on a vandalism spree and deface a national park. You know…as you do.
Or at least, that is as Vanessa Hudgens does. The former High School Musical star has landed herself (and her beau Austin Butler, who we can’t help but notice looks a lot like Justin Berber in this pic) decided that the best way to celebrate their newfound love would be to carve their names (inside a big heart with a + sign…because, of course) into one of the ancient red rock formations in the Coconino National Forest on a recent trip to Sedona, Arizona. This being the year 2016, nothing in the celebrity world happens without the requisite Instagram documentation, so naturally Hudgens took an artsy-fartsy photo of it and put it on her site. Within moments, the couple came under fire from observant fans and conservationists alike, all decrying their lack of respect for a national park and monument. In an attempt to minimize the damage before it spiraled out of control, Hudgens quickly removed the photo from her Instagram, thinking (hoping) that would be the end of it.
Honey, please. This is the internet.
And here is the picture she took down (see how easy that was?)
It should be noted that Hudgens and Butler didn’t just demonstrate a remarkable lack of judgement with their actions… I mean, yes, we all know how juvenile it is to carve your names inside of a heart on the side of a rock formation, but perhaps more significantly, they also put themselves in direct violation of United States Federal Law. As it pertains to our national parks, it is illegal to “damage any natural feature or property of the United States.”
This takes me back to my days in Air Force boot camp, where if we were outside in the sun and didn’t have enough sunscreen on and got burned, we would get a severe tongue-lashing (or worse…usually worse) for “destruction of government property”. The take-away message? You just don’t do it. You don’t go there.
So it would seem that all of the sudden, the National Parks Service has been given the opportunity to teach the public a very valuable lesson; to make an example of Hudgens and Butler as a cautionary tale to others who might be tempted to leave a little something behind the next time they visit one of our national parks.
A source for Coco Nino National Forest recently spoke with US Magazine on the topic.
On Monday, Feb.15, we became aware — via media and public reports — of an Instagram posting by Vanessa Hudgens showing a scratching or carving of a heart with two names in it on a rock that allegedly is on the Red Rock Range District of the Coconino National Forest
This incident is currently under investigation, so there is not much I can share specifically since I am not privy to the details of an investigation until it is complete. However, I can say that the issue of people carving their names and other things in rocks in the Sedona and surrounding area is always a challenge we face, and try to inform people about its destructive nature. We have found that when one person carves something, it encourages others to carve.
So there you go. It’s “always a challenge”…meaning Hudgens and Butler are two in a long line of idiots to visit the park, only to leave a little too much of themselves behind. And what’s more? The punishment could be pretty severe if the parks service decide to really throw the book at them. A fine of up to $5,000 or up to six months behind bars are the current punishments that could be dished-out for their actions.
So what are two lovebirds to do? Are there matching orange jumpsuits in their futures? While our Trendelier soothsayers tell us that the possibility of any jail time is highly unlikely, we do feel that Hudgens and Butler can probably expect to be getting their check books out in the very near future. In the meantime, I guess we’ll just have to get used to seeing them being battered-around like a cat toy on social media.
Vanessa Hudgens you defaced sacred land in Sedona AZ and you need to fix this. Shame on you!!! Sedona will not welcome you back until U do.
@VanessaHudgens SMH, Shame On You
@VanessaHudgens @austinbutler Carving on the Rock of a national monument. Really? You’re a shameful person.
What moron would graffiti on Sedona’s red rocks?! I hope Vanessa Hudgens is punished for carving on one of the most spectacular places in AZ