After carefully avoiding the snow (by taking I-70 all the way to Dayton, Ohio, then driving up I-75) I made it home last night.
The biggest problem was that I nearly missed the I-75 exit because the signs had been so severely painted over by vandals as to be unreadable. In fact, almost every single road sign — including almost every mileage marker — on Highway 70 has been painted with dark brown paint, in what struck me as a superhuman effort by someone (or a group of people) to prevent anyone from reading the numbers.
Eventually I realized that this was paintball gun vandalism, but I had not known how far it had gone. I do not exaggerate when I say that almost every sign — from the Ohio border to Dayton and from Dayton to Toledo — has been hit. It’s beyond ordinary vandalism like spray-painting buildings, as people rely on road markers and signs and when they are unreadable, confusion and accidents could easily result.
I doubt much if anything would be done to these vandals if they were ever caught, but I think the problem offers an illustration of a key difference between left and right thinking. Individualist types on the right would want the focus to be on finding and punishing the offender — as severely as possible. The liberal communitarian approach, OTOH, would be to ban or limit the sale of paintball guns. In other words, one side believes in singling out the bad individual, while the other wants to punish everyone, by bureaucratic encroachment. As most readers know, I lean towards the former approach of nailing the bastards, even though I know it will never happen to them, even if they’re caught.
“Priorities.” (Spare me.)
The most callused approach I could find was apparently voiced by Seattle’s Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis, who was quoted here as saying, “With all the problems with real bullets, we think residents should be able to let loose with paintball guns.”
Hey, maybe they’ll hit his house!