Last week's letter blasting Beth Mason for he so-called "illegal" signs was well written - and convincing on the surface - but ultimately off-base. The letter's writer (her council opponent) argues there's a law against putting signs up, and that should be the end of it. But is it right that this law is applied to some, and not to others?
If I park where I shouldn't, I get a ticket - but some don't. If you ask for special treatment, you're probably refused - but some aren't.
Beth Mason puts up signs in the Second Ward and it's called "illegal," but Chris Campos puts up signs in the Fourth Ward and there are still plenty of them up. Really now, how is a law abiding citizen supposed to know what's OK and what's not?
Beth Mason is running for Council, in part, to change the notion that what you can do is determined by who you are. Like Dawn Zimmer - Chris Campos's opponent - she is running against the culture of favor trading and "one hand washes the other."
If the law against political signs were uniformly enforced, and made a reasonable provision for our Constitutional right to Free Speech, Beth Mason would be wrong to ignore it. But when it - like so much in this city - is enforced one day and not the next, it's wrong to make one candidate follow the law, while others break it with impunity.
This does matter. Over time our respect for the law diminishes and we move toward an "anything goes" mentality. What's the answer? We need to elect leaders who will ensure that laws are enforced equally for all. In my ward, the Fourth - Dawn Zimmer is just that kind of leader - and she deserves your vote.