"Bomb Iraq’ graffiti at SHS on Sept. 11 is act of vandalism, not patriotism | SummitDaily.com

"Bomb Iraq’ graffiti at SHS on Sept. 11 is act of vandalism, not patriotism

On Sept. 11, my daughter’s car was covered in “patriotic” graffiti while parked at Summit High School. The graffiti sprawled across the car included the phrase “bomb Iraq.”

In the first place, the idea of “bombing Iraq” requires much deeper thought and reflection. It is still an issue of intense debate by prominent, knowledgeable persons within the U.S government, and by other world leaders.

It is a complex and serious decision, not to be made lightly, and certainly not to be used as graffiti on any car. I would hope the school would encourage healthy and respectful debate on this issue, rather than allowing the sprawling of jingoistic and offensive political phrases on others’ private property.

Schools are protected sanctuaries where tolerance, wisdom, and understanding are taught. They should never be places where shallow calls to war and violence are tolerated.

Moreover, while those who wrote these words are entitled to their opinions, they are not entitled to break the law. Opinions may be aired legally in letters to elected officials, letters to newspapers or voting. Vandalism, on the other hand, is a crime. I expect the high school administration and the school board will address this matter quickly.

Most importantly, on a day remembering the victims of violence, I find any phrase suggesting violent actions against others to be extremely disrespectful and offensive.

The violence and hatred that resulted in the tragic events of 9-11 could well have started with graffiti reading, “bomb America,” or “death to America.”

While seemingly harmless, words and phrases can harm and even kill. I prefer to honor the victims of 9/11 by working harder to create a world in which different cultures can try to understand one another, or at the very least, agree to resolve differences without resorting to violence. Perhaps this is idealistic, but ultimately peace needs to begin somewhere.

Violence has never solved problems. Violence must stop S. beginning with something simple like graffiti.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.

Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.

Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User