Orion Twp. Supervisor Chris Barnett,
I just wanted to compliment you on the way you handled the Paint Creek Trail vandalism, both in the print editions of local papers – on Facebook – and in interview on local television stations. Well done! It was professional and up front and detailed how you wanted to handle the scoundrels. You made all of us in Lake Orion proud!
There were several “over-the-bounds” comments on the Facebook page, and also on the comments page in the local papers. As you know, there are several wackos in any community (and I have been accused of being one myself – no applause please!) and thus some of the comments reflected opinions from the usual suspects. Here are a just a couple of comments from me about those comments:
• $1,000 was too much to pay for a $20 sign. Obviously, this was more than just repairing a sign, it was about the destruction of property in a place that is frequented by children and families. The genitalia comments demonstrated that these vandals may have some problems that go far beyond their desire to spray paint signs.
• Why are there cameras on the trail? – there are cameras everywhere – it is part of society these days. And frankly, I welcome the cameras because there are children and lone runners and bikers on the trail and they have to feel safe.
• Haven’t you ever been a teenager? – yes, many years ago in the Dark Ages I was a teenager, but myself and my friends never responded to our whims by debasing and destroying property.
And what is most disturbing to me is why a group of teenagers or young adults decide that for amusement they would purchase cans of spray paint and deface signs.
And how four people share a similar thought process tells me that they have exhausted all the clean, good fun things to do in life or have run out of ideas and now resort to vandalism.
Perhaps a stint at working and assisting at some senior citizen homes or interacting with bed-ridden children at hospitals will alter their warped sense of entitlement and freedom!
Congrats again, Chris, on how you handled this!
– Bill Kalmar, Lake Orion resident