Fewer than two days after it was put up, a Democratic yard sign on Day Street was stolen.
Tannia Hotchkiss isn’t a particularly demonstrative in a political sense, although she is knowledgeable about politics. Her sign supporting Democratic incumbent Barack Obama was the first she had placed in her yard since moving to Granby almost 12 years ago. But Hotchkiss was deeply troubled that her sign — a common sight in yards across Granby, East Granby, the state and the country during the election season — had been removed.
“[It was] just one of those little signs,” Hotchkiss said. “There are principles involved and that’s why I’m so angry.”
For Hotchkiss, the sign theft was deeply troubling because it violated one of the rights enumerated in the guiding document of the United States, the Constitution.
“These thefts and disregard for civility and the American political process are disgusting, to say nothing about illegal,” Hotchkiss said. “I know they’re in the landfill. I bet they’re not even recycled.”
Hotchkiss was quick to point out that she truly enjoys living in Granby, citing the sense of community and volunteerism as well as the rural character of the town. She said Granby has good people and a good community that is, in general, remarkably generous.
“That’s why this is so upsetting to me,” Hotchkiss said. Her response was not simply to stay quiet, but to let others know that she wasn’t willing to let her rights be stepped on by others.
“Today I'm making a large, homemade sign for the end of our driveway saying that we still support Obama and that thieves had stolen our political sign,” Hotchkiss told The Granbys Patch during the weekend. “It probably won't be quite so polite.” Hotchkiss now has two signs up in her yard, reading “Great Job Thieves For Romney” and “Mitts Off Obama Signs.”
The two options Hotchkiss has considered, that adults or children took the sign, are equally troubling to her. She was distraught that mature adults could possibly perform such a palpably unfair act and worried where children, if they were the ones who removed the sign, would learn such behavior. Either way, the possibility that local residents removed the sign was deeply troubling.
“That’s disgusting,” she said of the idea that neighbors could steal from neighbors.
Hotchkiss plans to demonstrate on the Granby town green on Saturday at 10 a.m. to raise awareness of the issue and bring together other residents who have experienced such a theft.
Have you had a political sign stolen or damaged, be it for a Democrat, Republican or independent candidate? Patch wants to hear your story. Write about it in the comments or send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.