Political signs are being illegally removed

Removal or defacing political signs are regulated under RCW 29A.84.040 .

The “Letter to the Editor” was to bring notice to signs that are “placed legally”

 

Letter to the editor: Political signs are being illegally removed

Primary election voting is just around the corner. Many of us who belong to the Edmonds Civic Roundtable have been hearing directly from candidates that there are individuals in the Edmonds community that are removing their political signs from both public and private property. I find this quite discouraging. Regardless of what a person’s beliefs or commitment to a particular candidate, individuals run for office in good faith to help our community. It is just unAmerican to remove or destroy a political sign. When you steal a yard sign, you are stealing freedom of speech.

Moreover, it’s illegal under several Washington State laws, which make it quite clear, any person convicted of such violations would be subject to a misdemeanor, perhaps second-degree criminal trespass, or even be considered, based on the circumstances, a hate crime; all with fines and imprisonment.

I along with the membership of the Edmonds Civic Roundtable (ECR) celebrate the diversity of candidates in the upcoming elections. Sadly, we recognize there might be individuals who judge others by criteria other than their qualifications to serve. We encourage anyone seeing a person defacing or destroying any political sign to report the incident to the Edmonds Police Department; and a picture would be helpful. We have learned the value of a community’s eyes and ears is one of the very best ways to prevent crime.

Also, as a reminder the primary election is just around the corner. Voting booklets will be out soon as early mail voting begins July 16, 2021 and goes through Primary Election Day August 3, 2021. You are encouraged to learn about each candidate. The ECR home page website has exact candidate statements you will soon find in the voter booklet published for early review. https://www.edmondscivicroundtable.org

Tom Mesaros
Chair, the Edmonds Civic Roundtable