Legend: Election sign thief gets arrested for pilferage, DUI, and sales tax evasion.
Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2004]
Last Thursday I put out one of my Bush/Cheney signs in my front yard. Between midnight and
Here comes the fun part . . . I noticed that the car coming down the street was slowing down and pulling over to the curb right next to my yard. Sure enough, he gets out of his car and heads right for my sign. Just as he was about to uproot and desecrate it, I opened my gate and let my dog make the initial introduction!
As he ran to hide behind the rear end of his car, I promptly moved to the driver-side door, which was
And now for the "rest of the story." About
I followed him out to the perp's car and stood there while he asked the guy a few more questions. Upon learning that the guy lived a couple of streets down, I
Now, Oregon has no sales tax, so often Washington residents will buy and register cars in Oregon to avoid paying sales tax
Just for kicks and giggles I asked the officer if he smelled any alcohol coming from the guy! The officer looked at me, smiled and promptly gave him a field breathalyzer test. Guess what? You got it, he blew a .10, legally drunk in the state of Washington.
DUI, illegal registration and the brand of "MORON," all 'cause he hates Bush!
Origins: We've been seeing this account of a sign stealer who was dished up a heaping helping of just deserts since the final week of September 2004.
Though a number of the forwards preface the piece "From a retired Marine out in Washington State" or "This article was published in a Washington state newspaper," its author remains unknown. One possibility as to its origin positions it as a letter to Larry Elder, a conservative radio host on KABC Los Angeles and author of Ten Things You Can't Say in America, but even that hypothesis does not work to identify the person who penned the account.
The form of theft decried in the anecdote has in 2004 been a problem affecting supporters of both parties in Vancouver, WA, area. Republicans and Democrats in that region have been experiencing difficulties in maintaining their campaign signs where they plant them; signs have been removed, defaced, or sometimes even supplanted by placards touting the other candidate. A 70-year-old Vancouver woman awakened one fine morning to discover her "Kerry for President" sign in her front yard had been replaced with six "Bush for President" ones. Another Democrat in that town stated he'd had
that her Bush signs disappear every few days, along with all the Bush signs on her street. Indeed, throughout Oregon the Bush and Kerry campaigns and local police are getting dozens of calls a day about missing or damaged signs.
Possibly heightening the tension over who is making off with whose sign this fall is a change in policy many state parties across the country have instituted in 2004
Some victims of sign purloinage have attempted to counter these thefts by making their posted political statements more numerous or harder to remove. According to the Associated Press, across the country, in Winona, Minnesota, a couple had the following experience over their Kerry sign:
He certainly gave it his best shot. Carpenter screwed his two-by-four-foot Kerry sign to the wall of his house and coated it with Vaseline. His wife, Veronica, chipped in by running fishing line from the sign into the house and tying it to wind chimes. The chimes sounded about one a.m. Saturday. Carpenter says he was out the door so fast he forgot he wasn't wearing pants. Carpenter says four of the five culprits had fled. One apologetic woman remained behind, saying she couldn't stop her Bush-supporting boyfriend from going after the sign. She told Carpenter she likes Kerry. The Carpenters say they let the woman go without calling police.
Winona police said Rick Carpenter needed to get a good description or catch the people stealing John Kerry campaign signs from his yard.
He certainly gave it his best shot.
Carpenter screwed his two-by-four-foot Kerry sign to the wall of his house and coated it with Vaseline. His wife, Veronica, chipped in by running fishing line from the sign into the house and tying it to wind chimes.
The chimes sounded about one a.m. Saturday. Carpenter says he was out the door so fast he forgot he wasn't wearing pants.
Carpenter says four of the five culprits had fled. One apologetic woman remained behind, saying she couldn't stop her Bush-supporting boyfriend from going after the sign. She told Carpenter she likes Kerry.
The Carpenters say they let the woman go without calling police.
Returning to the region that is the subject of the
Yet with all that sign vandalism and efforts to counter same going on in the Vancouver, WA, area, nothing in the region's various news stories about the current spate of "capture the flag" insanity supports the tale of a home owner who set his dog on a sign napper then got one of the local gendarmes to arrest the man for sales tax evasion, driving on a suspended licence, and driving while under the influence. This story is best viewed not as a chronicle of actual events but instead as what some in the depths of their hearts fervently wish would happen to such a person.
Barbara "wishing unwell" Mikkelson
Last updated: 26 October 2004