Source: Philadelphia Daily News
Date: June 9, 2004
Byline: Mike Tafaro
Letter: Signe, where's the Love?Webmaster's note: a June 4, 2004 editorial cartoon by Signe Wilkinson titled "What to do About Whiny Skateboarders!" humorously depicted skateboarders as irresponsible, destructive, undesired, body-pierced, anc chain-wearing.
It's easy to shrug off satire when it doesn't directly affect you, but Signe's "Whiny Skateboarders" cartoon got under my skin.
Let's start with "Skatefare." I am a skateboarder, and a college graduate who works 40 hours a week and pays taxes in Philadelphia. Where does my money go, if not to cleaning up the parks?
"Find a New site!": Why find a new site when Love Park already provides one? There are plenty of places to skate in Philly if the police and security would just leave me alone. Because of my work schedule, I can't get to the "pay to play" indoor parks, so I am forced to skateboard in the streets. It's usually late at night and no one is around, so who am I bothering? (As for skating in Iraq, the now-defunct Big Brother magazine printed photos of a soldier there who brought his board and skated Saddam's palace.)
"Magnetize the Statue": If all skateboarders had piercings, this would be a great idea. But I'm already magnetized to LOVE because of its skateability. Besides, I think the point was to keep skateboarders out of the park, not magnetized to one of the world's most famous signs.
I'm not a hundred percent sure of this, but I think body jewelry is made from surgical steel and is not highly magnetic. If it was, I'm sure my piercing would have been torn out of my face when I got my MRI.