K’zoo fan thinks Komets are winners
All of Fort Wayne, Komets fans and management, and the coliseum management should be proud of the venue they utilize for their home games. I recently attended the home opener for the Komets against the Kalamazoo Wings on Oct. 12 and not knowing much about the past rivalry, I was in for a treat! I happened to be with a “posse” who had access to the Wings mascot “Slappy” uniform, so one of our “compadres” was Slappy all night long!
We were tailgating in your expansive parking lot and the night started, going from tailgate to tailgate conversing about the rivalry. Who was the better mascot, Icy or Slappy, better team, etc. etc.? I can really truly say the Komets have a loyal fan base. I was very apprehensive of being with an away mascot at a rival's home field, but hats off to everyone we ran into; they were very accommodating.
It's game time, so off we went into your beautiful coliseum (what a great venue) and who was to meet us at the top of the escalator but the Komets mascot “Icy.” There was a friendly confrontation between the mascots, and everyone there enjoyed both of them getting the fans into the competitive ire before the game. Not understanding mascot protocol, we did not have a handler for Slappy, and the Komets obliged us with their security personnel to escort Slappy around the coliseum. It was truly a great atmosphere for a home opener, and all the fans enjoyed both teams' mascots roaming around the venue.
In closing, Komets fans of Fort Wayne, the night didn't turn out for you the way you would have hoped, but you have one fan in Kalamazoo who was impressed with your “classy” treatment of your league rivals. The rink looked sold out, and everyone from the traffic cops outside to the attendants helping us to our seats was very friendly. We look forward to the continued rivalry between the two clubs/cities and welcome you to Kalamazoo. You guys are winners!
Mac R. Behnke
Don’t bully neighbors
October was National Bullying Prevention month. Children learn bullying behavior from their parents and other influential persons in their lives. As such, it is imperative that we model appropriate behavior.
During this election period, adults have actually begun bullying their neighbors to prevent them from posting candidate signs in their yards. Each of us should have learned in a civics class that the First Amendment elevates core political speech (including posting a sign advocating for a political candidate) above all other forms of individual expression.
The Indiana Legislature agrees and has passed a law granting all citizens the right to share their support for candidates through yard signs; Indiana Code 32-21-13 specifically permits the signs during election season and overrules neighborhood covenants to the contrary. Removing lawfully placed political signs from your neighbor's private property constitutes adult bullying, tramples the free speech rights of citizens, and violates state statutes of trespass (Indiana Code 35-43-2-2) and conversion (Indiana Code 35-43-4-3).
Similarly, neighborhood boards that strongly discourage homeowners from posting political signs 1) bully their residents out of their free speech rights, 2) ignore Indiana law (Indiana Code 32-21-13) and 3) somehow believe that their subjective opinion of yard aesthetics trumps our country's Constitution. What are we teaching our children? Perhaps it's the adults who really need the anti-bullying lessons and a refresher in the “We the People” program.