Last week, a couple were threatened with fines of $25 a day by their homeowners’ association unless they removed a four-foot wreath shaped like a peace symbol from the front of their house.
The fines have been dropped, and the three-member board of the association has resigned, according to an e-mail message sent to residents on Monday.
Two board members have disconnected their telephones, apparently to escape the waves of callers asking what the board could have been thinking, residents said. The third board member, with a working phone, did not return a call for comment.
In its original letter to the couple, Lisa Jensen and Bill Trimarco, the association said some neighbors had found the peace symbol politically “divisive.”
A board member later told a newspaper that he thought the familiar circle with angled lines was also, perhaps, a sign of the devil.
[...]Mr. Trimarco said he put up the wreath as a general symbol of peace on earth, not as a commentary on the Iraq war or another political statement.
In any case, there are now more peace symbols in Pagosa Springs, a town of 1,700 people 200 miles southwest of Denver, than probably ever in its history.
On Tuesday morning, 20 people marched through the center carrying peace signs and then stomped a giant peace sign in the snow perhaps 300 feet across on a soccer field, where it could be easily seen.
“There’s quite a few now in our subdivision in a show of support,” Mr. Trimarco said.
Town Manager Mark Garcia said Pagosa Springs was building its own peace wreath, too. Mr. Garcia said it would be finished by late Tuesday and installed on a bell tower in the center of town.
This episode in reminded me of something similar that happened closer to home. From Stephen & Virginia Pearcy:
When public support for the U.S. invasion of Iraq was at its peak, my wife and I voiced dissent in a very public way. The conservative media responded by demonizing us and encouraging right wing hate mongers to attempt to intimidate us. Fortunately, Mary Brassell and others with Media Edge were able to document many related instances of corruption. The video they prepared is now (finally!) accessible online.
The video linked below shows the media praising people who vandalized and stole our property. It also shows how the Sacramento District Attorney sent a strong public a message that vandalisms to our property would not be prosecuted.
Although the story is old news, it was never presented fairly in mainstream reports; so we hope that those who only saw the TV news will now see the facts presented the way they should have been reported--that is, without the right wing spin.
You can view the video at:
A Quiet Neighborhood
[Photo: Randi Pierce/Durango Herald]