It is frustrating to see the lack of maturity that some people have when it comes to graffiti. These signs were placed by volunteers and paid for by money which was either gathered through taxes or donated by those who want to keep these spaces open to the public.
At the top of Badger Mountain, I was disappointed to find more markings on the cement blocks around one of the communication shacks. I’ve also written before about graffiti on other signs but I haven’t seen it for a few years.
What can be done?
First off, if you are one of the people who figured your childish actions are more important than respecting property, grow up and man up! Take ownership of your actions and make your wrong right.
Now, I doubt there will be many takers on that last paragraph so it will probably be up to the rest of us. These are obviously the actions of a few ne’er-do-wells who likely had parents who didn’t reinforce manners and respect, I can go on to build my own picture of the perpetrators but I’ll stop by talking about what the rest of us can do. We can be vigilant and on the lookout for those who might harm some of this public property. Don’t confront anyone who you may see committing this crime, just take notes and do your best to provide identifying information to report to the authorities who can redirect this misguided folks.
Why should I do anything?
Well, you don’t have to, you can just wait and hope someone else will do something. But, if you want continued access to great hiking places like Badger Mountain and other, less organized hiking areas, we need to be the ones who help ensure a few people won’t ruin it for the masses. If people destroy and disrespect property, those who own or have stewardship over that property will likely decide to put of fences and close access. It is already happening in some areas of the Columbia Basin (see this article I wrote a few years ago about closing areas). Please help by encouraging everyone to follow the rules and engaging in good hiking etiquette so these areas will be around for many generations of enjoyment!