EDITORIAL: Leave election signs alone

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Elections and our subsequent right to vote are part of our identity as United States citizens.

Along with that comes our right of expression. Some of us keep our candidate of choice to ourselves but others choose to proudly promote their favorites through social media posts, memorabilia and, most visible to the public at large, yard signs.

This year is no different, as lawns throughout the community have started to sprout signs in favor of certain governor, school board and supervisor candidates. These are integral parts of the election for the public as it's a safe way to show your support and your intentions to vote.

Unfortunately, these signs can often be the targets of theft and vandalism. The destruction or unauthorized removal of political signs isn't just simple vandalism, it's the removal of one's ability to voice his or her opinion. Everyone is entitled to their right to choose a candidate and by destroying the sign, one shows a belief that someone's point of view is not as important as their own.

It's also a crime that can be punishable by a fine or arrest, depending on the severity.

Again, we all have our own opinions and we may not always agree with each other. That does not give us the right to decide to step on someone's property and remove or destroy something that belongs to them.

Parents, also inform your children about the importance of campaign signs. They can be easy targets for what seems to be innocent fun, but again, these are protected by law.

On the flip side, people who post political signs should also be respectful to the public. Make sure signs are not in areas that impede pedestrian traffic or obstruct drivers' views of the road. Signs must be placed out of the public right away.

While signs are expressions of choice, they can be dangerous if not placed or cared for properly.

Additionally, signs should not have obscene language, images or be outwardly disparaging and attacking of another candidate. Campaign signs should be supportive of your candidate and show why you deem him or her worry of your vote.

Election season is an inspiring time of year because it puts on display the ideas of people who want to represent our schools, communities, state and nation and bring change, hopefully for the better. It is up to us to keep that spirit through support of our favorite candidates, not the reduction of others.

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