Driving home today along Athllon Drive I see four campaign signs from Joy Burch (Labor candidate for Brindabella) strewn along the roadside. That made me pretty angry.
This senseless vandalism is getting ridiculous. I heard that one candidate last week had every single sign stolen from around the electorate. These signs are not cheap and if your campaign budget is small, like Joy’s, each one is very valuable.
It’s one thing to strategically place your sign to obscure that of an opponent at a shopping centre or ring the Rangers to complain about someone’s sign inappropriately placed – that’s strategy – taking advantage of the opponent’s poor choice.
Vandalism (like plagiarism) is the choice of the stupid, the lazy, and those incapable of waging a clever campaign based on sound policy, good marketing and solid community relationships.
But it’s not just that. Joy doesn’t have rich business backers or a wealthy husband backing her campaign. She doesn’t have a high profile from years in the public eye. She isn’t a sitting member with a nice salary to build an election nest egg.
Joy relies on meagre funds from generous supporters (many of whom can ill-afford it) and the support of friends and family to keep her campaign going. If Joy has any chance at all in the election it will be from sheer hard work on things like the campaign to save the Wanniassa Medical Centre.
She’s a good person and it’s a disgrace to treat her this way.
You’d think that elections would bring out the best that parties have to offer. What I’m seeing is the worst of some people and I don’t think it’s the last.
All I can say is that if people are so frightened of someone like Joy who’s just a nice, hardworking person that they have to stoop to this sort of activity – they deserve a resounding defeat on October 18.
PS: I’m a Labor Party member and NOT on Joy’s campaign team and don’t know her that well. Of course I’m a little biased but I’m a lot angry.