Winchester, MA seventh-grader Luke Macannuco has just demonstrated to the world the power of his pen in defending the U.S. values of civil and humane discourse in society. And he did it in an argument over a lawn sign.
In a letter to the editor published Saturday in the Winchester Star titled “Hate Has No Home Here,” Macannuco wrote:
I read, with great interest, Mr. John Natale’s colossal misunderstanding of the “Hate Has No Home Here” signs. Natale’s first mistake was claiming the signs read, “Hate has no place in this home.” Mr. Natale is incorrectly assuming that the owners of the sign are finding it necessary to state that there is no hate in their home. But, as the American flag depicted on the sign signifies, the posters are referencing the entire U.S.A., a country that does not tolerate hate in spite of its current leadership. Those people who have chosen to place a “Hate Has No Home Here” sign on their lawn are standing behind their belief that the country should be free of hate.
Like other communities across the country, Winchester, a town of about 22,000 people, decided it needed more civic engagement. After public discussion, residents decided to join the nationwide “Hate Has No Home Here” initiative started by Chicago–area elementary school students to combat hateful messages and behavior.
The effort in Winchester is non–partisan, and volunteers agree to post signs printed in red on one side and blue on the other with the words “Hate Has No Home Here.” The goal is to become an inclusive society, one neighbor at a time.
Apparently Natale, who considers himself a “50-year Tea Party member,” didn’t take kindly to the new signs popping up everywhere, confirming the need for them in the first place. Natale sent his own letter to the editor complaining about it on April 20. (Unfortunately, Natale’s letter doesn’t appear on the Star’s website, although maybe they’ll post it now.)
Macannuco issued a four-point rebuttal that takes down bigots, haters, and those who consider themselves “morally superior.” But the best is his closer:
Also, Mr. Natale, if you’re going to ask us to do you a favor and take the signs down, do humanity a favor and take your Trump signs down. Finally, if you are going to say signs exhibit “snowflake sensitivity,” take a moment to think about how you are writing an angry letter to a newspaper about a lawn sign.
In case you’d forgotten, seventh-graders are smart.
Following are Macunnuco’s four piercing points. Read the entire letter here.
1. Question: “Who are the haters that you, the sign owner, are referring to?” Answer: Bigots who are trying to take away protections for transgender students, deport refugees and build a very expensive wall to keep illegal immigrants out (which is completely pointless and not helping your cause, but I digress).
2. Question: “What, or whom, do the haters hate?” Answer: Perfectly innocent human beings who happen to be different from the haters.
3. Question: “What is the evidence that there is significant hate in our community?” Answer: Me getting called homosexual slurs by students and adults alike.
4. Question: “Obviously, you are so morally superior that you may declare everyone who disagrees with you a hater (side note: this first part is a statement, not a question). Where, when, and how did you become the Lord High Decider of Morality?” Answer: Never. We just put a lawn sign down. Calm down, dude.