Full disclosure: I am 100% Anti HOA. There are no arguments that will ever change my mind on this. This may or may not be relevant in a few minutes.
Over the weekend, I noticed that my "Next Door" app was "blowing up" (by that, I mean, there were multiple reports and people were posting on it.) We have a local person who started a couple of facebook groups and volunteer groups to help people find their missing dogs and cats. (We have a separate one for birds.) The dog/cat rescue people have been searching (and receiving tips) about a missing Aussie for a few weeks now. I've seen the signs.
Someone on ND posted a plea for people to start taking down the signs. He said they were making the neighborhood "trashy" and then he called the pet owners "crazy" and that the dog must be dead. I voted to remove his post because it was mean and ridiculous and the pet group has permission to put up signs. They are still getting tips, and it's likely that the dog has been stolen, or is being cared for by someone who doesn't know it belongs to a family, or the dog is just in survival mode. There are enough people around here that leave out food when they see animals that it's not impossible for the dog to still be alive.
Someone had screencapped the post and shared that with a plea to not take down the signs. You'd think that would be the end of it. Nope. Going on day four or five of this. Someone filmed two women taking down signs. The women didn't want to be filmed and one assaulted the photographer. People are arguing and getting passionate about their hatred for a couple of missing pet signs. Which then causes the normal people who have hearts and compassion and aren't just walking bags of disaster to tell them why they are being jerks. Now people are citing state laws and municipal code. Supposedly there are news stories looking for the women who stole the signs.
And there are still people whining about how "trashy" and "bad" the signs make the neighborhood look. The signs come down eventually. They are laminated. These are probably the same people who want to live in HOAs and have their house look identical to their neighbors and choose between three different shades of white for their mailboxes, while taking away resources from the rest of the city, forcing more people to have to choose between ugly pre-planned neighborhoods controlled by over-zealous people who care what color your flowers are and will put a lien on your house for daring to use the front yard you paid for as a yard.
Anyway, this last year has shown me a lot of the misplaced passion in my municipality. For years, it seemed like no one really cared about anything. But then Covid hit, and suddenly there are people being outspoken about the most bizarre things. Somehow wearing masks is an agenda by our progressive assembly to take away rights. Missing pet posters are a scourge and people just need to let their pets die, I guess. Anti-cat people posting about how much they hate cats when no one brought up cats in the first people. Opening a homeless shelter in an unused building is hurting people who make $100,000 a year, somehow, I don't know.
Have people always been this selfish and they just didn't talk about it? Is there some sort of collective unconscious that's making people just lose their minds at the most bizarre things? Are we all just stressed and acting out by focusing on weird things?