Poop and politics collide in Omro

An Omro resident opened her door to an unpleasant surprise earlier this week, and she thinks it was a response to the political signs in her yard.

Kristin Banta, a teacher at Oshkosh North High School, found a piece of paper — with three pieces of what appeared to be dog feces taped to it — on her front porch on Tuesday night after she heard a knock at the door. The probable pieces of poop were taped to drawings of sheep labeled as “sheeple,” accompanied by a handwritten message: “Go back to sleep America, your government has everything under control!!”

Also scrawled on the paper is “YouTube WTC 7.” A quick search for the term on YouTube leads to a string of conspiracy theory videos suggesting that the Sept. 11, 2001 collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 was a controlled demolition executed by the U.S. government.

Banta has yard signs for three Democratic candidates in her yard: President Barack Obama, State Sen. Jessica King and 53rd Assembly District candidate Ryan Flejter. She said she’s been very politically active since February 2011, and had signs supporting the recalls of former State Sen. Randy Hopper and Gov. Scott Walker in her yard during those races. Once, her signs were removed, but beyond that, she hadn’t experienced any form of harassment until this week

“It was intimidation, bullying behavior,” Banta said. “If you want to talk to me about my yard signs, knock on my door and let’s have a conversation. But don’t poke and run. I’m all for a civil conversation about politics, as long as you’re going to be civil on my property.”

Banta filed a harassment complaint with the Omro Police Department, who said there is no evidence linking the paper with any particular person.

According to the police report, on Wednesday, police received an anonymous tip from someone who lives in Banta’s neighborhood. The source said “every election year some very young children take dried animal feces and put every candidates [sic] name on them and ring someone’s door bell and leaves [sic] it on their porch and says don’t forget to vote.” The source told police it is meant as a joke to remind people to vote and not meant to favor one candidate over another.

Police took the poop-adorned note back to the station after Banta’s complaint was filed.

About Jessie Opoien

Jessie Opoien joined the Oshkosh Northwestern as a reporter in December 2011. Politics and education issues are her specialties, but she loves to tell a good story regardless of the topic. You can find her on Twitter as @jessieopie.
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