I learned yesterday that the Obama Mosaic that has been mounted on a heavy-duty wooden sign on Route 250 Bypass was removed sometime Friday night or early Saturday morning. Some unknown individual sawed through the 4"X4" posts and absconded with the sign. It is unknown if the sign was stolen for its artistic value, or by someone who is opposed to anything Obama. Simply put, this act is a crime and theft and/or destruction of private property is not something that we should tolerate in Charlottesville.
Local radio host Rob Schilling posted a comment about the Obama sign being removed on Oct 07, 2010 claiming a variety of political reasons for removal of the Obama sign. Schilling was totally wrong in his assessment. In fact, the Obama sign suffered from being exposed to sun, snow, salt, etc. and the adhesive backing used in constructing the mosaic sign failed. The sign was in my possession until I did the necessary repairs to the mosaic I created back in 2008. The sign was remounted on Route 250 Bypass earlier this month when the restoration was completed.
I realize that Rob Schilling is in the entertainment business and not necessarily in the business of providing factual material for consideration by his listeners. But had he done a bit of fact checking, he could easily have discovered the facts surrounding the temporary removal of the Obama Mosaic. Perhaps there is more entertainment value for listeners and better ratings for the Rob Schilling Show to present wild speculation rather than well researched information.
In a Schilling Show blog of Oct. 7, it is stated that "An inspection of the site yielded no evidence of vandalism or destruction; no shards of smashed ceramic were detected." But, now there is clear evidence of vandalism and destruction of the sign. I encourage Rob Schilling to discuss this vandalism on his show and post another blog entry about the Obama sign. Although I am not a regular listener of his show, I would gladly tune in to hear him condemn vandalism and destruction of this sign as an unacceptable and illegal act in our community.
I am sending a copy of this blog posting to the Schilling Show and I will encourage that Rob Schilling present a clear position on freedom of expression on private property and if he supports or opposes the removal of the Obama mosaic from private property.
-- Peter Kleeman