Stupid Damn Kids

So, last night at around 11:45 pm some kids came through my neighborhood and stole all of the Obama signs out of everybody’s yard. I was actually fast asleep when it happened but my dog started barking like crazy and woke me up. The kids then turned down a side-street to collect those signs before heading back up my street to get the rest. So that gave me time to grab my glasses and car keys and follow them. I didn’t catch them — thank God, I was in my PJs and fuzzy slippers — but I did hear them shouting and hollering and having a good ol’ time, and I got enough of a look to see they were young kids, probably College Republicans from either Belmont or Lipscomb, but I really don’t know.

Frankly, I’m surprised it took them this long. My yard sign has been up since May; normally it would have been removed at least twice by now. Some of my neighbors have had their signs up since March, believe it or not. I took the fact that our signs have remained unmolested this long as evidence of a conservative enthusiasm gap. Also, I’ve seen very few Romney signs around town, and many of the ones I have seen have been in the public right-of-way. My rule of campaign signs is this: if most of your signs are in the public right-of-way (*cough*cough*RON PAUL*cough*cough), that tells me you can’t find enough real people willing to display support. And yes, Phillip North, I’m looking at you, too.

And now I’m sure one of my conservative readers will want to tell me about their neighbor/friend/relative who had a Republican yard sign stolen. Right, “both sides do it,” yada yada. I’m not going to say that someone, somewhere, who is not serial victim Phil Parlock, never had a Bush or Romney sign stolen. But let me just say, this is now my fourth presidential election in this house, in this neighborhood. And while most of my neighbors are Democrats, there are a handful Republicans who each election display their support of the GOP ticket with a yard sign. I have never, ever, in my 12 years of living in this neighborhood, ever seen their signs stolen or vandalized.

Ever.

Which tells me that College Democrats are too busy doing stuff like trying to organize GOTV and registering voters, instead of wasting their time with stupid pranks like violating citizens’ property rights and free speech. Go figure.

I really don’t understand the point of doing this, either. It’s not like we’re not all going to go out and buy more signs. In fact, I buy mine in bulk because I’m just so used to having them stolen all of the time. One sign disappears? Two replace it. In 2008 I ended up with five signs in my yard, one nailed to a tree, out of reach of thieves. I mean, it’s not like we’re not going to be even more motivated to express ourselves.

So it seems the kids are up to their their stupid pranks. Last week they decided to clean out everyone in the Belmont University neighborhood, last night it was my neighborhood. One large sign on Belmont Boulevard was brutally vandalized, just slashed in half. Incidentally, that homeowner caught the culprit on video and has filed a police report. So you kids who think this is all fun and games had better watch out. Piss people off by denying them their free speech and you’ve poked a stick at a hornet’s nest. People do prosecute this stuff because of the larger principle at stake.

Some people even boobytrap their signs. I’ve been known to place dog poop strategically nearby. So, if anyone wants to steal my yard in the dark of night, you’ve been warned. Bwaahaaa.

Also, a final message, to be filed under awesome:

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21 Comments

Filed under 2012 presidential election, free speech, Nashville, politics, Tennessee

21 responses to “Stupid Damn Kids

  1. Karen

    I live in Arizona (enough said right there) and not only do my signs disappear, I get the “looks” and head shakes from the neighbors. Every election, they are reminded of Liberals in their midst.

    • Every election, they are reminded of Liberals in their midst.

      LOVE IT!!!

      “Won’t back down” indeed!

    • benchbear

      I’m a Romney supporter, Obama disliker, but I 100% agree with your sentiments – this stuff ticks me off! In part, because in my neighborhood (Chicago suburb) our Romney signs get stolen. I thought we had the moral high ground here – my wife and I never heard of Obama signs defaced or stolen. Until now. Sigh. I guess miscreants know no party.

  2. Last time, somebody drove into our yard and ran over our Obama sign. We still have it and will put it back out, tire marks and all.

  3. Mnemosyne

    Somehow, I’m not surprised that it took until school was back in session for your signs to disappear. Though I’m sure that alcohol was also involved in the decision.

  4. SiubhanDuinne

    So glad you included the image. I keep it in my photo album and was going to email it to you, but you’re way ahead of me, SB!

  5. Dru

    A well-known Nashvillian once advised me to invite my neighbors to walk their dogs daily around my political yard signs. After dogs do what they do the vandals either won’t walk there or, if they do, they’ll “cut their feet” as they say in the country. At least you’ll get revenge that way.

  6. Mary L. Wilson

    yeah, stupid indeed! We had a great story that went viral to the Net last weekend (the Daily Kos, FB, etc) about an awesome gal, working 24/7 for the Campaign here in Knoxville…who had a 3ft x 4ft BIG sign put out, with her daughter and granddaughter on either side…the next morning the sign had been cut to pieces, so she took a photo of the little girls with it in shreds…and the story is that she said…if ‘they think’ this will stop me, they are wrong!
    And since I had bought a bunch of signs to Give Away free, I personally delivered 10 free Obama yard signs to her front door while she was at church. And these commenters and your photo tells the truth…this hate and vandalism just fires up folks to buy MORE signs, giving the President more money!!

  7. democommie

    They were PROBABLY college reptiliacans? Well, sure, in the sense that I prolly require at least 20% of the air I breathe to be oxygen.

    Fucking thugs is what they are.

    Not at all the same thing but a local taproom had a serious makeover including replacing both the mens’ and ladies’ restrooms, A nice job of work was done and it was finished in late August. Two weeks ago last monday some stupid young asshole (tats and tude) ripped the flush valve off the top of the urinal. It happened that a retired DEC guy was sitting at the bar (his duaghter works there) and followed the kid out after hearing the commotion. He badged the kid (who was too stupid) to ask for hid ID and kept him from running off until the local PD showed up.

    Much drama ensued with the vandal claiming he had done nothing and claiming that the urinal was damaged when he went into the mens’ room. Typical cowardly punk–if he’s into politics I have no doubt that he’s a teabaggist.

  8. I live in Hendersonville. I had my Obama sign stolen during the last election. No other signs in the neighborhood were touched (all GOP) but ours. We replaced the one sign with five signs. Had they done it again, we would have replaced them with twenty five. I feel your outrage. I have two friends who’ve had signs stolen in the last week locally. One for Strong Schools (my non-profit that promotes school funding) and one for Obama. It’s amazing how freedom of speech seems, to some people, to be a one-way street.

    • themadkansan

      …Those of us who live in reality understand that coercion is wrong.

      …Those who do not, do not.

  9. I just ordered my Obama yard sign and can’t wait to post it on my KY lawn. My neighborhood leans left, I believe, so I’m curious about the longevity of said signs. I love the photo above and the statement about posting what you believe in – it is a nice reminder to the red neighbors that HEY -WE EXIST – AND WE’RE YOUR NEIGHBORS! :)

  10. We have an Obama sign up already. My mom, sister and I are now volunteers at the obama hq here in our neck of the woods. You know, there are college groups from UC Davis ( Ca ) who came over to get stickers and other stuff because they ran out of them in half a day.

  11. ATSF616

    My 2008 Obama yard sign was trashed on a Saturday afternoon — in broad daylight — while we were home. I first suspected a random drive-by incident, but when the little boy next door ran into the house every time he saw me for the next few days I began to wonder. They seem like incredibly nice people in face-to-face interaction, but I’ve seen the dad’s Facebook page and there’s some pretty wacko far-right stuff on there. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think so.

    • Dang, that would have me worried. How “little” a little boy are we talking about? Those parents needs to be warned that they have a budding psychopath. Kids need to learn to respect other people’s property, if not their viewpoints.

      • ATSF616

        Probably 8 at the time. BTW, I did NOT intend to use my full real name on that post. Could you please change it?

  12. democommie

    ATFS616:

    I think you might want to talk to the kid and his parents and tell them that you are very concerned about someone being such lowlife scum that they would do such a thing–without accusing them of having done it-and watch their reaction.

    Kids grow up to be evil fucks if that’s what their parents/peers model with no corrective influence from sane people.

    • ATSF616

      As I said, I have no real proof, just some odd behavior on his part for a short time after the incident. But I’ll be planting several potentially unpopular campaign signs in my yard again this year and I intend to watch them very carefully.

      • democommie

        Webcams are your friends. Set them so that they show your yard and the general area. If someone trashes your signs, send the recordings to your local PD, paper and State Police CID–and a courtesy copy to the local GOP.

        It’s only a “prank” until one of the assholes is prosecuted.

      • ATSF616

        I have seriously considered that. Thanks for the tip.