Vandalism not worth retaliation

Early Sunday morning, individuals spray painted expletives on University signs, kiosks and sculptures across campus. The police were able to apprehend the suspects, but the damage had already been done.

Addressing the culprits and labeling them as delinquents or immature isn’t necessary, nor will it be commented on at length.

Vandalism is both illegal and a pathetic expression of childishness, but that’s generally understood.

Retaliation, however, is no better. Whether the students were from the University of Toledo or not, and whether the attacks on our campus were response to something that might have happened up at the University of Toledo, the actions can evoke negative emotions from both sides. If unchecked, these emotions can lead to equally disturbing activity, and the result would be that our school looks as bad as the poor image these individuals have painted for our northern rivals.

Who’s to say that University of Toledo students were the ones responsible? What if the criminals were from some other school? What if Central Michigan or Buffalo came to the University to create controversy here in Ohio? By attacking back, we’d look like fools, hasty in deciding and ridiculous in our level of maturity.

Even if the assailants are from the University of Toledo, why would we want to emulate such low activity? What would responding do other than leave us vulnerable for another attack?

All of these questions are rhetorical in nature, but we point them out in an effort to paint a picture as to what the future could look like if anyone from our University were to respond.

Being mad is easy, but being able to step away from a situation, to analyze what can happen as a result and being able to make a wise counter-response is a good indication of poise and intelligence. Our University administration continues to advocate critical thinking, and this is the perfect example of how carefully dissecting the consequences of a given situation is better for everyone.

Even though not responding to their vandalism seems like a sign of weakness, refraining from doing so speaks a powerful message to our University “artists.” It’s not a sign of weakness to forgive and forget.

Even though the evidence suggests that the vandals could be University of Toledo students, we are calling for the University community to recognize these attacks as the workings of individuals.