11.27.2006

Satan: Prince of Peace?
Peace: Divisive & Offensive?

Yes & Yes...in Colorado

Peace on Earth? Not in Our Subdivision!

from The Associated Press

DENVER, Colorado - A homeowners' association in southwestern Colorado has threatened to fine a resident $25 a day until she removes a Christmas wreath with a peace sign that some say is an anti-Iraq war protest or a symbol of Satan.

Some residents who have complained have children serving in Iraq, said Bob Kearns, president of the Loma Linda Homeowners Association in Pagosa Springs.

He said some residents believed the wreath was a symbol of Satan. Three or four residents complained, he said.

"Somebody could put up signs that say drop bombs on Iraq. If you let one go up you have to let them all go up," he said in a telephone interview Sunday.

Lisa Jensen said she wasn't thinking of the war when she hung the wreath. She said, "Peace is way bigger than not being at war. This is a spiritual thing."

Jensen, a past association president, calculates the fines will cost her about $1,000, and doubts they will be able to make her pay. But she said she's not going to take it down until after Christmas.

"Now that it has come to this I feel I can't get bullied," she said. "What if they don't like my Santa Claus?"

The association in this 200-home subdivision 270 miles southwest of Denver has sent a letter to her saying that residents were offended by the sign and the board "will not allow signs, flags etc. that can be considered divisive."

The subdivision's rules say no signs, billboards or advertising are permitted without the consent of the architectural control committee.

Kearns ordered the committee to require Jensen to remove the wreath, but members refused after concluding that it was merely a seasonal symbol that didn't say anything.

Kearns fired all five committee members.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Panda Rosa said...

This is just sad. The inoffensive Peace sign is condemned? Ironic, considering its origins in the 60s. I do know about its various origins and confusing history; personally I would consider it out of place on a Christmas wreath. (How often do you hear the word "Groovy" these days?) But this is just way overreacting. Will the wreath itself go next, because it offends those who do not believe in Christmas?
The only symbol that wouldn't offend anyone, I fear, is a golden gleaming dollar sign-$!

November 27, 2006 5:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shit like this is why I live in the sticks. The cows don't complain when I go a week without mowing the lawn or hang a Danish flag out front.

November 28, 2006 12:28 AM  
Anonymous kelly g. said...

Uh, sorry, don't know how that got posted under "anon". For the record, I have no problem admitting that I congregate with cows, take no pride in well-manicured grass, and approve of blaspheming countries.

November 28, 2006 12:31 AM  
Blogger Darren said...

Look who blinked...

Woman with 'peace wreath' won't be fined after all

from The Associated Press

DENVER — A subdivision has withdrawn its threat of $25 daily fines against a homeowner who put a Christmas wreath shaped like a peace sign on the front of her home.

Homeowner Lisa Jensen told The Associated Press on Monday that the board of directors of the Loma Linda Homeowners Association had apologized, called the incident a misunderstanding and had withdrawn its request for the wreath's removal.

Jensen was ordered to take the wreath down when some residents in her 200-home subdivision saw it as a protest of the Iraq war. Bob Kearns, president of the board, also said some saw it as a symbol of Satan.

The homeowners' association demanded Jensen remove the wreath from her house, saying it doesn't allow flags or signs that are considered divisive.

None of the three members of the board in the scenic town 270 miles southwest of Denver was available for comment late Monday. Kearns and colleague Jeff Heitz both had their phone numbers changed to unlisted numbers Monday. Tammy Spezze, the third board member, did not return a call seeking comment.

Jensen, a past association president, said she was overwhelmed with hundreds of calls of support and offers to help her pay the $1,000 fine that would be due if she kept the wreath up until after Christmas.

"We would like to thank everyone who has contacted us with moral support and offers of financial support. We are grateful to hundreds of complete strangers who felt so moved by this story they contacted us," she said.

"It seems whenever someone tries to say 'Peace on Earth' it is met with so much resistance," she said. "The incredible amount of support we have received over the last couple of days really is proof to us of how many people believe in peace and in our right to say it."

November 28, 2006 2:40 PM  

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