2008-10-18 / Editorials & Letters

Choice is part of democracy


The upcoming presidential election has provided an amazing opportunity to educate my two young children about the process and value of democracy. It is a lesson that has allowed us not only to discuss, but also to understand and appreciate diverse viewpoints and priorities.

However, my lesson was recently derailed by the theft of our yard sign. How do I explain to my children the person who stole our sign believes choice is not a part of democracy? I struggle to understand the accomplishment in such a discriminatory crime. When I hear terms such as "unpatriotic" or "hate of freedom," I believe these are appropriate descriptions of those who choose to steal an individual's right to express their position, especially during an election.

In addition, I am alarmed by the fact someone trespassed my property to take a sign. Finally, how can we expect our efforts to spread democracy around the world will be productive if some of our own citizens can't understand the concept themselves? I am bewildered by the thought that someone feels replacing my Obama/Biden yard sign with a crumpled beer can will change my vote. They may be disappointed to know it only validates it.

Amber Howell Baltimore

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