During the Democratic primary here in Ohio, I placed a Barack Obama sign in my yard.
When you put a sign in your yard or a bumper sticker on your car for a sports team or a political candidate you can expect a minor amount of ribbing by your neighbors or even some times a random passerby.
I sure did - one neighbor was super pro-Hillary and another neighbor's daughter told me she heard Barack Obama said in a speech that if he was elected he would tax white people higher than blacks. I didnt bother responding, because if she did actually believe this, I didnt want to argue over something that absurd anyway.
I have long since taken the sign down, partly because it advertises the concept of voting for him in the primary and mostly because lots of wind and weather had all but sheered the turgidness of the metal legs. It's leaning against my living room wall right now.
The neighborhood that I live in is 99.999999999% white. A block away from me lives a man who runs a motorcycle gang. And when I say this, I dont mean some guy who fancies himself a biker on the weekends. He's a man who runs a very legit and very tough biker gang that started over 40 years ago. He carries at least one bullet in his body that cannot be removed and several biker-style tattoos on his body. I mention the tattoos because at least one of them is quite a large "SS" tattoo on his forearm. He's a nice guy and has always shown me neighborly respect when we've interacted. I've always just chalked up the "SS" tat as some poor and hasty descision in his youth that he now wears to remind himself of the error.
Well it turns out he's the local head of the KKK as well. Now I dont know how "local" local is ... I dont know how far out that radius from this point reaches, but I'm guessing it's a fairly large local.
Some of his buddies were delivering food to my neighbor's house back then when my sign was out and mentioned something about burning a cross on my lawn.
And I have to admit that while every fiber in my body says "I dont care what anyone thinks" ... I'm re-thinking putting another sign out in my yard. I'm also mildly worried about even having a bumper sticker or my mom having one. Then again I tend to worry too much, and I'm sure the cross burning thing was just a flippant reference and I'm a huge proponent of the nation having this dialog and facing this hurdle in our on going struggle with race relations. And I'm a little mad at myself for even worrying or needing to worry about this.
I need to think about this further.