I just read Jeff Clark’s editorial in August 1st’s Packet about MDOT’s decision to remove roadside memorials from the state right-of-way.
I have to agree with the state’s decision. While I don’t think the memorials pose any more of a distraction than flashing digital billboards or kids dressed as Uncle Sam waving a sign for cash advances, I can see where they interfere with right-of-way maintenance (mowing). I have also seen many that only get cared for a couple of times a year (or not at all)and end up looking ratty and trashy.
Lastly, I don’t think the roadside is the proper place for memorials. If a person wants to erect a memorial to a passed love one, their loved one’s grave or, better yet, a spot in their house would be a much better alternative. If my grandmother had died while shopping at Wal-Mart, I wouldn’t place a giant Styrofoam and ribbon cross in the aisle of the grocery section.
Tim Moore via email0