Sportress of Blogitude

I Doubt This Lady Still Wants To Display Her Steelers Banner After Last Night


After getting the ACLU involved, Penbrook, Pennsylvania (which is considered Baltimore Ravens territory) homeowner Alissa Myers will now be allowed to hang her 2-foot by 8-foot “You’re In Steelers Country Now” banner on her house without having to pay a $40 permit fee. Officials were threatening to assess fines on Myers on a daily basis until she complied. The only other option for Myers would have been to only display the banner only on game days, but that wasn’t good enough for her, so she did what any sane person would do – she consulted the local chapter of the ACLU and they were more than happy to assist her on this affront to her constitutional rights.

The matter at hand is that hanging the sign is a violation of a Dauphin County ordinance, which:

…allows permanent commercial signs up to 20 square feet, and signs that identify businesses to be up to 100 square feet. But, Ms. Burch said, non-commercial messages — either political, religious or personal, are limited to 16 square feet, permitted only for brief time periods and allowed only if they “advertise political parties or candidates for election,” “nonprofit, charitable and similar events,” or qualify as “holiday decorations.”

Of course, the County caved to the ACLU demands, which they made known in a letter to the County, informing them “that the ordinance controlling signage was unconstitutional. Specifically, it said that the way the law was written, it appears to favor commercial speech over personal speech.”

So, everyone wins, except for the Steelers, who essentially saw their playoff aspirations go up in smoke last night after losing to the lowly Browns  13-6, their fifth loss in a row which dropped them to 6-7 for the season. The putrid effort wasn’t helped by the fact that in last night’s game, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was sacked more times than Rome.

But I imagine, if she is a die-hard Steelers fan like she claims, Miss Myers will continue to fight the good fight. At least for now. And if she does, I would have to give her credit. After all, this is an issue of free speech. I’m guessing that she won’t take down the banner until the Steelers finish out the season with three more losses to end up 6-10. Then she will be sufficiently shamed and will burn the banner in disgust. At least that’s how I would go about it, but I have issues with setting things on fire. Just like all those kooks who kept sacking Rome.

Officials in Dauphin County allow Steelers sign on house [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
Penbrook residents face ultimatum over Steelers sign [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
I Guess We’ve Solved All The Real Free Speech Issues [Deadspin]
Browns sack Steelers 13-6 [Yahoo!/AP]