Condo Owners Miffed By Removal Of Virgin Mary Statue

ROBINSON TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — The Vasko home is full of religious icons. Some of them have seasonal significance and some don’t, but all of them are inside the home for now.

“I had a Blessed Mother statue sitting out here,” Steven Vasko said.

He placed the statue just below the window of his family’s Robinson Township condominium.

“Yeah it was taken,” Vasko said. “The association – they stole it.”

He’s kind of right. The homeowners association did have someone remove the 150-pound cement statue from the spot.

The association says its common ground. No one is allowed to have anything on common ground so the statue had to go.

To get the statue back, Vasko will have to open his wallet.

“I have to pay a fine,” he said. “Would that be extortion or kidnapping? You tell me, I don’t know.”

Papers from the homeowners association indicate the Vaskos were fined for every month they violated policy by having the statue outside illegally. That fine is now more than $4,000.

There’s more. Because they haven’t paid the fine, the homeowners association is holding the statue and has just taken away the couple’s rights for them to park on the property.

“This is religious persecution. This is discrimination. Is it a losing battle to hold your ground? No.

“If you are, then we might as well all quit as Americans and say, ‘Have a nice day, bye.’”

Looks like the homeowners association plans on standing its ground. So do the Vaskos, they say, for the Virgin Mary.

“I made a promise to the Blessed Mother and I’m keeping it,” Vasko said. “And this is about her. This isn’t about me.”

The dispute will most likely end up in court.

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One Comment

  1. Amie says:

    I agree rules are rules.
    I am NOT a chrsitian and I am offended by religious persecution of ANY kind.
    However I wonder if this guy would be as open minded about someone putting a statue of Buddha up, or a very small mosque etc?

    1. Midge Masters says:

      It’s a typo you mental deficient. People that point out typos are small minded degenerates that have no real information and contribute nothing.

      Living in a condo is the last place you’ll ever have any freedom. These places are always full of power tripping, ego maniacs that are control freaks. Sell your condo and move somewhere far away from these low grade morons.

      http://911essentials.com

    2. jackdhoward.com says:

      Boy, are you that backwards or what? Are you trying to dole out “equal” religious IN-tolerance from Christians to justify this atttack on the Madonna? “Promote Islam or you’re fair game?” It’s not about an attitude of intolerance but an act of seizure of an article of practice….. The Middle East, as the seat of Islam, treats religious minorities horrifically…Christianity has for the most part developed alongside individual freedom of expression for seevral reasons (yes, here come the little patter of rats feet…Crusades and Ireland). Islam always preaches tolerance, until the conquest, Rushdie! And I know, btw, many Catholic Buddhists (inc. a Priest)

      1. truthyou says:

        This is not about religion. It is about someone wanting to have rights to trample on others. A common area is not the place to store your personal property, whatever it may be.

      2. David Powell says:

        Agreed. One has to stick with the issue and not they hypothetical.

      3. Fred Ogle says:

        It’s not the Madonna. It’s a representation.

    3. Jack D Howard says:

      You ask, What IS a Christian? Was it Oscar Wilde who answered you? “I have no difficulty with someone who is Christian. But there’s only been One.”

      1. Thomas Austin says:

        You do know that Oscar Wilde was a self absorbed sexual and moral degenerate, don’t you? Not the kind of person you would approach for a true comment on what or who is a Christian.

        And the get it straight, Jesus was a Jew. His followers are Christians.

    4. Jack D Howard says:

      Why is it that people who say Nazi, Nazi, Nazi are usually thought police, but have no original thought? They loathe free speech. Why is that? I suspect, because they have no sense of history, outside their own ignorant sense of self. They love to listen to the sound of their meaningless voice, as though it is music…instead, they are easy prey to the new label, which sets them apart from all the errors of the apst…they are they think and tell themselves….enlightened, and only ask that others should follow them. It’s an honor to be called the worst things from such people, since they are so wholly wrong about virtually every thing. It is a badge of honor to be hated by those who have no knowledge of love.

    5. Dutch Van Alstin says:

      I bet he wouldn’t care. Intolerance comes from those who quash religious expression. You have a prejudicial and closed-minded view of people of faith. And by the way…..I haven’t been to church in 25 years. Agnostic!

      1. joev says:

        As much as I condemn suppression of free expression of all kinds I must side with the Home Owners Association here. The statue was not even on the mans own property and the Assoc rules clearly state what he did was wrong. Not because it was a religious statue but because it was on common area, where no one may place statues or anything else.

        Let him place it on his own property or if he is unhappy with the rules of the Assoc then he should move.. All homeowners are given a book of all the rules of the assoc, when they move in.

      2. Shawn P says:

        Home Owners Associations are out of control; and quite frankly I think could easily be challenged in a court of law.

        Just because a group of individuals banded together to form an HOA, and enforce their own pet peeves and desires over the rest of the population, does not make them legit, nor I question even legal.

        The day you pay my mortgage, is the day you can tell me what kind of flowers I can plant on my property.

      3. Mari D says:

        I agree… Homeowners Association’s are out of control. Unfortunately if you live in a property that is governed by a Homeowners’ Association, they can and will tell you what to do regardless if you pay your mortgage.

    6. Tom Menino says:

      Castellanos goes Derp, Derp, Derp.

    7. Bad Santa says:

      A christian is a person who eats lots of apple pie with ice cream. Rudolph told me this when I was walking him.

      1. Buck Ofama says:

        >A christian is a person who eats lots of apple pie with ice cream. Rudolph told me this when I was walking him.

        Did your reindeer god tell you this before or after you licked up his sh|t from the ground?

    8. Benny Lauden says:

      I didn’t take it.

    9. Reuben says:

      There is a difference between a statue of the Virgin Mary and a Mosque, and a big difference between Christians and Moslems. The statue is not a place where people go to pray, if he were to put up a Church, I can see that its a problem. Now as for the moslems, when is the last time a Christian suicide bomber blew up a bus? or a plane? Yeah, I cant remember it either. Islam is a relegion of peaces, a real blast. Dont forget that the Christian God died for his people, and the moslem god asks his people to kill for him. And dont go cry about the Crusaides, the Christians didnt invade, the went to liberate the Holy city from the religion of the sword, which had captured it. Educate yourself before you speak please.

      1. JRHowosso says:

        Have you forgotten about the crusades????

      2. Rob says:

        The crusades happened some 800 years ago but Islam continues persecuting Christians today, big difference.

        I love the Virgin Mary Statue but if this man agreed to the rules when he originally signed the lease or ownership papers then he should obey the contract. Some Home ownership groups are too strict and act like they paid for the property. This H.O should have confinscated the statue before it allowed them to incur a $4000 fine.

      3. Jack says:

        Thank you Reuben for telling the truth. The general public’s view of the Crusades is so different from the actual history. Yes, some crusader activities went way to far and atrocities did happen, but the crusaders didn’t start the conflicts. The Byzantine Empire was ruthlessly invaded repeatedly by Islamic forces. Only after decades of trying to avoid war did the Catholics come to to the aide of Orthodox Christians in Asia Minor and the Holy Land.

        The reality is that 9/11 was hardly a unique event. It has been happening for over 1000 years.

        Of course, this has nothing to do with the actual news story above…

      4. Nadadhimmi says:

        Islam built their mosques over the remains of pre-existing Christian Churches and Jewish Tenples that were conquered and destroyed by moslem murderers. Then, when Christians and Jews protest that fact, they are branded as intolerant by the very perpetrators and their western dhimmi’s.. The Jews were there first, the Christians second and the moslems last. The moslem cult teaches death to ALL non moslems unless they convert or pay tribute and live as 2nd class humans. Anyone that denies that simple chronological fact is an idiot or dhimmi. Case closed

    10. Tim Baker says:

      I am a Christian and I am offended by ignorance and an inability for patience. Education may be difficult for you, however, remember how small you are in the grand scheme of things. For the sake of Christ and yourself and others around you – try to learn. God Bless you.,

      1. 1972Patriot says:

        Offended by ignorance and inability for patience ? ? ? These homeowners are breaking the rules that they have agreed to. They aided and abetted in their so called kidnapping of the Virgin Mary.

      2. Remnant says:

        I am a Christian and I am offended by this man’s ignorance in wanting to worship an image. His energy should be used in finding out what the Scriptures teach about pagan image worship and the Mary.

      3. abbey says:

        Remnant: You are WAY off base. These people are NOT worshipping a statue. If that were true, then even a cross would become a pagan image. And that just is not the case. Think ‘representation’.

      4. PabloKoh says:

        A contract the homeowners signed would have stipulated the agreed to rules of the property held in common. They have broken their contract and their obligation to the association they belong to. The condo association needs to go to this family’s pastor and have the pastor explain the situation to them.

      5. Myrtle Bobby says:

        Don’t live in an HOA if you can’t obey the rules. If there was an 11th Commandment, it should be: “Thou shalt honor the covenants, conditions and restrictions.” I have no pity on these people. Common ground does not belong to them.

      6. Jon Weiss says:

        Myrtle Bobby,
        Are you sure that the “common ground” does not belong to them? From the photo in the article, it would appear that the statue is affixed to or at least leaning against a wall, probably (I do not know for sure) the outside of the Vasko Condo. Before you make such a judgment, you may want to review the text of the agreement Vasko signed to live there, if the entire structure is considered the residence, then the outside wall is not common ground, but is rather, Vaskos property, based on the slip-shod actions of the HOA of denying parking (an action unrelated to the placement of the statue) I would hold the actions of the HOA “suspect” based on their past performance. As the article states the issue may end up in court, if it does, the outcome should be very interesting, providing that the court does not go “Kelo” on them.

        For those not versed in the Kelo decision the courts in that case held that the city had the right to seized private property and sell it off to commerical interests in order to make a fast buck, leaving the person wio owned the property with nothing. Unfortuately, New London CT, where the case occurred, stuck its tax payers with a “pig in a poke” since the commercial interests who were going to buy the property went under leaving the city with a now useless property that the city is required by its own laws to pay the upkeep.

        There is a God and I do love poetic justice. New London getting the shaft in the Kelo case, is proof.

      7. Wake Up says:

        Tim, if rules are rules, then what about the most important set of rules – the US Constitution?

        Remember these words “the free excersize of religion may not be infringed”

      8. Uddercha0s says:

        @remnant You venerate statues & icons, you do not worship them. Huge difference.

      9. Tom G says:

        @Remnant- It is honor, not worship. That you are taught different should make you question your teacher. One of the commandments says: “Honor your father and your Mother.” Jesus obeys (present tense) all of the commandments. He doesn’t mind that His mother is honored, He does it in heaven also. Since He is our brother, she is our mother also. See Rev 12:13&17 “woman who brought forth the male child” and “the rest of her offspring, those who keep the commandments and hold fast to the testamony of God.” We are commanded to honor her, our mother.
        Consider also at the cross, Jesus said to the beloved disciple (that’s you and I): “There is your mother.” Perhaps you should consider if you, a beloved disciple, should ask, “Is it I Lord” when sitting at the table.

      10. Ghost says:

        There is a right way and a wrong way to do anything, if the COA had a ligitimate problom with the statue they should have given the owners of the statue a deadline to remove it, then if the statue was there after the deadline, they should have acted thru the courts, not remover the statue themselves. Being an officer of a COA is not the same as being an officer of the courts or an officer of the law, and does not grant one the authority to do as you please with the property of others.

      11. den says:

        I think they did plus the fines too.

    11. Clyde says:

      Property rights and unequivocal land ownership were among the rudimentary building-blocks of this republic.

      These concepts have been eroded by the overuse and cavalier application of eminent domain, through draconian and excessive property taxes on the part of insanely corrupt ruling-class-minded bureaucratic crooks, and through purchasable units on “common ground.”

      Yeah, that’s some “ownership” we got going here.

      I think, collectively, we’ve done been had.

      1. Robbob says:

        What the flap are you talking about. This is a condomenium association not a town. When you buy a condo, you are NOT buying any land. You are buying a volume of space inside a structure that you do not own either. This familiy was occujpying property they had no ownership interest in.

      2. Mac says:

        “This familiy was occujpying property they had no ownership interest in.” Sorry, there you are wrong. When you own a condo, you own a fractional interest in the common elements. Otherwise you would be unable to cross the parking lot to get to your “airspace” without trespassing. Were these elements general common elements, it means everyone get to use them, limited, only certain people. But the property owners own a piece of the place where they had the statue.
        I don’t know if they are being persecuted or not, but I do know the COA had only a marginal claim in taking something which they do not own on property the condo owners have a fractional legal interest in. The COA is going to lose this case.

      3. Dano says:

        Kuddo’s. God Bless you, you are a true patriot and could not have said it any better.

      4. mahone says:

        Clyde, I’m not disagreeing with you; however, when the federal government changes the rules of property ownership, i.e., the recent eminent domain changes to allow governments to seize private property and pass it to other private citizens, it puts a whole new slant on things. Law is not inviolate to the Federal government, so why should it be to the gentleman with the dispute with his home owner’s association?

      5. dadoodoodoo says:

        They should have just said that the statue represents the “99%”, and everybody would have backed off.

      6. den says:

        Mac you are talking about an easements(walking up to your condo) you cannot be prosecuted for using your easement.
        The condo association are correct so long as the contract is accurate.

    12. Z22 says:

      Times are interesting for sure.

      http://www.dailyjobcuts.com
      `

    13. Steve Vasko says:

      Nope, please I would want people to view there points., Its America freedoms is what we are suppose to be about.

      1. Scott Fawley says:

        Has anyone set up a fund to help you pay for court costs and the fines? If so, let me know where to send some money, please.

      2. Steve Vasko says:

        Scott, Since the case was heard before and Common Plea Court and dismissed w/ prejudiced given those results and not appealed by The BOD we figured it was a done deal. I actually never knew once a Judge makes a ruling and that’s it. Well guess not the harassment continued. Im still wondering were the 4000K come from when the fine after the Judgement was only 300+ dollars than in a few months went to 4K. When asked no answer was given. Maximum fines is 150 by-laws. And when a Judgement is dismissed don’t we have a double jeopardy laws. I’m reading all these about the regs being violated and we are just ignorant to the rules _. okay well we will find out one way or another.

    14. omstrat says:

      I bet if someone left a small mosque there no one would DARE touch it. Cowards like you love to mock Christians but you’d soil yourself if you offended Islam

      1. Albert MacMeda says:

        While I get & agree with your point (people defend excesses by moslems and overly persecute Christians) you’re comparing apples with oranges. Of course, if a moslem put up a statue of Mohammed someone would declare a fatawa on him or her so, of course, that’s not going to happen.

      2. UraDumbArse says:

        “Christians” who are as ignorant as you have murdered countless millions of people over the years, based on -made up- -self-serving- “prophecy”.

        You could join the modern world and denounce the mind-control techniques infliicted on you using “stories” from bronze age mythology,

        Or go ahead and “worship” Zeus. It makes as just much sense – to a thinking person who has not been brainwashed and indoctinated since birth.

        Sincertely, UraMoron.

    15. Ken Bowser says:

      Liberals accuse folks of being Nazis. I find that stunningly ignorant since Nazism is a far LEFT form of government

      1. chet huntly says:

        When did moving a statue become news? Who cares?

    16. Gilda Vasko says:

      There is a statue of Buddha up in our neighborhood. We have no problem with it.

      1. JPeach says:

        Once the association allows a statue of Buddha, it allows all other statues. It has by fiat stricken that rule down.

      2. Robbob says:

        Are you a Vasko in the story? Is that house part of your association or just in your neighborhood?? If in the assiociation is the Buddah part of the exclusive use area of the owner? Some condo assotiations are a mix of stand alsone fee simple property and multiunit buildings with fee simple airspace units. JPeach, quit making assumptions.

      3. Look out for the “Free Mary” on my patio doors. I’m rooting for you Gilda, so is Buddha! Just rub his belly for good luck! And you know who, can rub his a$$!

    17. Santa Dude says:

      Rudolph just pooped on the rug again!!!

    18. Robbob says:

      You all are backwards. This is solely an issue of someone violating the rules of the conominium association. In a condo, you only own from the inside paint inwards. You do not own or have occupation rights to the grounds outside except parking spots. This has nothing to do with religious percecution. This would be no different than if this familiy owning a standalone home and putting their statue on their neighbors property. That neighbor can have it removed at any time. And the strawman postulate is so yesterday. “If they are against a Christian theme, they MUST be for a theme from a different religion”. This is evidence of a very simple mind.

      1. Albert MacMeda says:

        It is true they should have obeyed the rules as they worked to make them more reasonable. But every day you read about how ridiculous homeowners’ associations are and yes, often because some atheist gets into a position of power and makes trouble for everyone. We don’t know enough about this story to know how much that is also true here. Or maybe not. Don’t know enough to say.

      2. Albert MacMeda says:

        Oh and you’re dead wrong about “only owning from the inside paint inwards”. You still own as usual, but you’ve agreed to certain restrictions that apply only to all those who’ve joined the same homeowner’s association as you. That’s why I would never, ever join one. Too many idiots like the ones running this one.

      3. Much Ado About Nuttin says:

        Robbob you are right on.

        I can tell you that after years in real estate I am sick and tired of people who enter into contracts (whether for a mortgage or an HOA agreement) then “cry wolf” when it becomes inconvenient for them. IMHO they either a)knew what they were getting into, or b)should have known. As adults it’s all of our responsibilities to understand what we’re committing to when we enter into a contract… and if we don’t either find someone who can explain it or cancel the deal.

        To those who see this as a religious freedom issue I say there are plenty of actual cases of religious intolerance in this country (against Christians and others) that are more worthy of your attention.

        Now to watch some football.

    19. John Scott says:

      shishhhhhhhhhh I thought is was seperation of shirts and skates… good thing!!!

    20. John Scott says:

      shishhhhhh at first when I read this it was about Jesus but now I think it is about…uhhhh I don’t really know!!! may be about American rights to freedom… or could it be about GUN rights… or just could be about a stupid thing that is about nothing… YEP!!! Wake up America, there are a lit more things to worry about..

    21. Albert MacMeda says:

      A statue of Buddha, no problem. But this guy didn’t build a small church, so what are you talking about a mosque for? Sounds like the association rules are ridiculous but didn’t the guy know them when he chose to move there? And $4K in fines, that’s just ridiculous.

    22. dbeall says:

      Entering someone’s property and removing something without permission is theft.

      1. Dave says:

        But, entering upon property owned by the homeowner’s association and members collectively is not. Especially when the agreed upon bylaws of the community (which the people agreed to when they bought or leased the condominium) state that NOTHING shall be placed in the common areas (which is everything outside of their living quarters) and grants them the right to remove/confiscate after repeated warning and citation.

    23. Warrior says:

      HOA are Communist manifestations of equal distribution of assets. If these people own their Condominium, they have no responsibility to protect the value of their neighbors home; just their own. HOAs are breeding grounds for the “Little Ole Lady Busy Body Mentality”. Covenants should be tested in court and ruled Unconstitutional–they destroy the “Bundle of Rights” normally associated with property ownership.

    24. Jon Weiss says:

      I too am a Christian, I am also a soldier sworn to uphold the Constitution, as a result I have studied the Constitution and its creators and their thoughts in other writings. Above all else these men craved liberty, not oppressive rule. If people want to put up a Buddha, a Mosque, or a Nativity, as long as it is on their own property that is a Constitutional right.

      Even though the statue in question was placed on Common ground, simple courtesy demands that Vasko be asked to move it to his own property before they confiscate it. The Homeowners Association was out of line. This case like several others recently in the news, religious items , flags, banners, being ruled by HOAs’ as “In violation” is merely a case of people in a position of power (The HOA) running amuck. In the story it states …

      … “the homeowners association is holding the statue and has just taken away the couple’s rights for them to park on the property.”…

      So, exactly what does a statue placed under a person window in violation of policy or not, have to do with the right to park your car? The HOA cannot make a decent case for their position so they look to other quarters to press their point through pressure, by restricting other rights, what is next? If Vasko does not pay the fine are they going to cut off his lights and water, simply to prove their point?

      In several of the other cases the rules were ambiguous at best until the HOA’s decided to rewrite them, on the fly, to suit their own desires.

      This story is merely one more example of why we should never live in a community controlled by a draconian HOA, or allow any other group to exert such power without a challenge.

      1. Jato says:

        As far as I’m concerned, a HOA is just another form of gov’t and legalized tyranny. As a nation, we need to get gov’t out of our lives no matter which form it takes: Federal, State, Local & Home Owner Associations! For those who believe that a HOA is NOT a form of gov’t, I offer this definition: government is control exercised over the actions of the members, the citizens, or the inhabitants of a community.

      2. Just the facts says:

        I disagree respectfully. It has been found that the Mosques are being used as terrorist contact points and need to be disallowed in this country. They are a huge national security risk.

        Why do we continue to allow Mosques to infiltrate our country while we cannot build churches in Saudi Arabia where they money is comming from for this infiltration of Islam.

        Anyone who reads the Koran can see that it is a religion of conquest and hate towards anything not Islam. How can this religion be tolerated by any human with an ounce of common sense?

    25. Dr. Rich says:

      Amie what is it about you that thinks the obviously devout Catholic would be
      intolerant of other faiths? You comment says more about your orientation of projecting you intolerances upon others without justification. Perhaps you might want to think how you interact with people.

      1. Ann says:

        having them take down the display is one thing —but to fine them is just a way to make money—HMO”S are just a money slush fund —and a way to keep control over others—

    26. Jawal says:

      The Condo association is right. A symbol on the door or door frame would not be removed. The outside of the Building is not common space; condo insurance regs reflect this reality. Common space needs to be neutral and it is not persecution to remove it.

    27. Ray says:

      When i was a child I was better Christian, and I would scoff when the Pastor would tell us that someday Christians would be hunted and harmed. That to be a christian would be regarded as a criminal act, and the world would turn against Christianity. The Pastor said it was foretold in the Bible, a prophecy in fact. How could such a thing be possible I wondered? Christians mean no one harm to anyone. Why would anyone jail or hurt a Christian ?
      Yet here we are, the Prophecy is coming to bear, and while I am nowhere near as close to Christ as I was as a child, I can not tolerate the persecution of my brethren, and I am mean enough now to mean that.

      1. UraMoron says:

        “Christians” who are as ignorant as you have murdered countless millions of people over the years, based on -made up- -self-serving- “prophecy”.

        You could join the modern world and denounce the mind-control techniques infliicted on you using “stories” from bronze age mythology,

        Or go ahead and “worship” Zeus. It makes as just much sense – to a thinking person who has not been brainwashed and indoctinated since birth.

        Sincertely, UraMoron.

      2. Who is John Galt says:

        @u r a moron. Please do tell what millions of people have been murdered in the name of Christianity. Hint: You can’t, just another left wing lie repeated often enough that gullible fools like you think it’s the truth. Hundreds of millions HAVE been murdered in the name of atheism, Mao, Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, Pol Pot…the list goes on…..Not to mention those unborn babies murdered by the millions by your evil ilk.

    28. Ann says:

      They do have Buddha’s all over the place, people use them in gardens and in the front yards near water falls, Hindi’s have the cow as sacred, and no one but now one would ever tell them that they have to take it down OR KILL A COW, I have never ever heard of anyone having to take down a Buddha ever!!! having a small prayer house in someones yard is fine—sorry,Muslims pray out side on rugs — Mosque are just meeting places to here the Imam , SO YES THIS DISCRIMINATION IN AMERICA — IT’S CHRISTIAN BASHING — AMERICA HAS JOINED IN — THIS IS NOT THE WAY OUR COUNTRY WAS FOUNDED — SORRY!!!

    29. Will says:

      The statue was erected on “common” ground which is ground not owned or rented by Vasko therefore he has no legal right to use it in violation of homeowner association rules, particularly for his own purpose.
      As a renter, Vasko is obliged to follow the rules of his landlord or purchase his own property where he can do as he pleases.

    30. jimbo says:

      Go back to the middle east and the stone ages.

    31. T-Texas says:

      I am Christian and believe you haven’t saw anything yet.If I don’t like a object,icon or whatever I don’t look at it.Something like this should be up to the individual and not to some home owners association.The property belongs to me and tax people.

    32. gc66 says:

      Lets face it…….it’s over for the Christians…….just ask the muslims…….merry christmas!!

    33. A. Levy says:

      1) Where do the Nazi’s who run this place get the authority to levy fines and categorise things as “illegal”?
      2) How are these Homeowners groups different from the Gestapo?
      3) If the people were any other religious group, (other than Christians) wouldn’t they be protected by the Constitution?

      1. Dave says:

        1) From the contractual agreement which the family in this story agreed to when they bought/leased the condo.

        2) First, they aren’t a government group. Second, they aren’t persecuting any one’s religious practices. They were warned and cited MANY times before the statue was confiscated. Third, they’re not rounding up a particular religion to kill them. Your “gestapo” and “nazi” comments are ridiculous.

        3) No, this would not. The constitution protects people from the government’s curtailment of the free exercise of one’s religion (and the establishment of one religion, or religion in general, as the dominant belief system in the US). It does not protect people from the results of their contractual agreements. They agreed to the bylaws of the Homeowner’s association. They agreed to the fines, the warnings, and the eventual confiscation when they signed their contract that detailed violations, events of default, and other events that give rise to the homeowner’s association’s right to fine and confiscate.

        Any more questions?

    34. S Smith says:

      What the familty should do is file a stolen property report and let the police act on it.

    35. teaisstronger says:

      Hire an actor to dress up like the Virgin and stand on the front lawn. Now lets watch what they do.

    36. TOM says:

      A “promise to the blessed mother”? Such nonsense. A good example of deluded magical thinking.

      1. Tom says:

        Maybe you should try making a promise to the Blessed Mother. She may be gracious to give you some brainpower.

    37. Mornin Joe says:

      you are a fool

    38. sylvie says:

      You don’t have to be anit-christian to agree with the Homeowners Association. A Christian doesn’t need a statue, in fact such idols are actually against Christianity. Take a word from the wise, stop erecting statues and start praying.

    39. CSHJ says:

      It doesn’t really matter whether he would agree to statues of other religions. The HOA rules which they agreed to (whether they knew it or not…..which is no excuse) stated they couldn’t put anything on common ground. I presume that the siding on his condo is considered common ground. #1 RULE: Never, ever, ever ever ever…………buy property run by HOA’s. They WERE nice people turned NAZIS with the power they have. They are just as bad as the FEDS. I’d rather live in a barn in the country.

  2. Sarge says:

    My bet is he wouldn’t be offended, this was not a matter of offending anyone. it is about rules, the rules we all create and allow to be created so someone else can control us in one way or another. Remember, every rule, policy, law, regulation takes away a freedom from someone.

    1. Jack D Howard says:

      Zero Sum Freedoms? That’s not true….not even close. Go check out Dworkin on First Principles. Freedom itself, at its highest levels of expression, rests on some calculable rules or principles. They derive consistency, as the consent to govern from these First principes are understood.

      In a similar way, the right to express an opinion is designed to express unpopular opinions…the Founders know this. Now, these basics are treated as odd or crazy ideas (e.g., Ron Paul!…and I’m a Democrat!!!!) It’s time modern Americans started relearning these basic principles….but that may cut into video time.

      1. Fluidizer says:

        Glen Beck tried to teach us, and you see what happened to him.
        By the way, how can you be a Democrat and refer to the Founding Fathers? Your hero Obama regard the Constitution as a “Hindrance” you know, and ignores it at every opportunity. You need to get with program dude.

      2. Dave says:

        And Bush called the Constitution “just a piece of paper.” Both parties are corrupt. The only man that follows the constitution is Ron Paul.

      3. Just the facts says:

        @Dave please educate yourself press Bush never said such a thing. Try just a simple fact checking first before you keep repeating lies.

        You are what is wrong with this country you just parrot what you hear and check nothing yourself.

      4. Just the facts says:

        @Dave

        Ron paul is just as dangerous as your lies to promote him are.

      5. Dave says:

        Wrong, he did say it. In fact he said it’s a “god-damned piece of paper.” http://whitehouser.com/politics/bush-constitution-just-a-piece-of-paper/

        Stop YOUR lies and educate YOURSELF. You lying piece of filth.

    2. Bill Caldwell says:

      Those rules also protect other people’s freedom.

  3. Sorry says:

    While I can be sympathetic to the guy’s religious piety and his desire to display the statue, the bottom line is, it’s not his property. He lives in a condo. The common areas belong to everyone, not to him, and he is going to lose any fight to defend placing HIS property, whatever it is, on the common grounds. It has nothing to do with religious freedom or beliefs.

    1. Jack D Howard says:

      So, when one person (in this case, you) can simply dismiss HIS belief that it IS about religious freedom….well, that suggests a problem, doesn’t it? Now take a cluster of HOA board members, letting plants stay, or a banner, or a windsock…but no Mother Mary…then we have abunch of people just like you…and this man: well, it is ony one person, right? And he’s all alone, so we must be right. Yeah….let’s straighten him out: it’s not about his religion—-we told him so.

      1. Karen H. says:

        Exactly, I bet if you look all over that stupid Nazi-like ‘condo association’ you’ll find there are condo owners all over who’ve got potted plants etc. on ‘common ground’ that aren’t bothered in the least. The problem when people say ‘don’t buy there’ is that there are TOO MANY places like that (plus individual neighborhoods) where you can hardly avoid these Nazis.

      2. Dave says:

        You guys are basing your arguments on hypothetical situations. There is no evidence that there are items in common areas that are being allowed to stay. The fact of the matter is, this guy signed a contract that restricted his actions. He is not allowed to put up ANYTHING in the common areas. They gave him warning after warning and he refused to comply. They exercised their rights due to his breach of contract/default.

        There is only evidence that this family is violating their contract and thus are violating the rights of the Condo Association (that is, the right to have clear common areas that may be enjoyed by ALL homeowners). Now they are framing it as a “religious” fight, when the same result would have happened if they had decided to put up an Pittsburgh Steelers display or some other equally violative object in common space.

        This is about property rights and contractual rights, not about religion. Go talk to a lawyer, they’ll explain it to you.

  4. Fritz says:

    I’ll betcha you can’t hang a Welcome Race Fans off your balcony either……..how about moving?

    1. Steve Vasko says:

      Actually there is a great deal of stuff hanging all over the place and that is fine with me, And as I seen the Condo Assoc. They been putting up Christmas decor that’s fine. what I find funny is Without The Blessed Mother to be Chosen by God as His Wife to conceive Jesus- we wouldn’t have Christmas so there is rather a oxymoron in understandings I guess.

      1. eruthk says:

        FYI, Mary was Joseph’s wife, not God’s wife.

      2. XtianDoctrinezLULZ says:

        @eruthk: Right. Polygamy is biblical, but it was usually the male having multiple wives. Some Catholics believe Mary was God’s wife *and* Joseph’s wife making her the only female bigamist in the Bible.

      3. Guest says:

        You have a bigger problem on your hands then the condo association. And that is the elevation of a human being to god like status.
        Certainly Mary was a honorable and good woman but she was still a human and not Gods wife and Jesus is not our brother. Jesus is God and Mary was the mother of the hypo static human man part of Jesus, not the mother or wife of God.
        This pseudo worship of Mary is not biblical it is heresy and an abomination.
        That said I do support you in principle over the condo association.

      4. Just the facts says:

        @Xtian

        A simple search is only needed to show Christianity and the bible cleary is for one woman one man.

        “Augustine saw marriage as sacrament-friendly covenant between one man and one woman, which may not be broken. It was the Creator who established monogamy: Therefore the first natural bond of human society is man and wife.[30] Such marriage was confirmed by the Saviour in the Gospel of Matthew (Mat 19,9) and by His presence at the wedding in Cana (John 2:2).[31] In the Church—the City of God—marriage is a sacrament and may not and cannot be dissolved as long as the spouses live:”

        It takes a couple minutes to find these facts and it just shows how lazy people have gotten. They rely on others to do their research for them and then are surprised when they find out they have been passing on lies all the while.

        That is what is wrong with America today. THAT IS WHY OBAMA IS PRESIDENT TODAY.

      5. Frank says:

        Liar. They have things in areas that are designated as allowable. You need to read the agreement you made with the Association before running your liar mouth.

    2. John Scott says:

      Dotto!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      1. Steve Vasko says:

        Earthly Wife your right! Eruth and Jone so she was not punished. Heavenly Mother I have to say you have homework.if you actually care. If not okay. Immaculate Conception was no accident.

  5. Pedro says:

    I’ll betcha you can’t hang a Welcome Race Fans off your balcony either……..how about moving?

  6. marilyn says:

    Any idea where this is? I sure wouldn’t want to live there. Ta’k about “rules and regulations”. I hate when homeowners associations get their “panties in a bunch”. It would only be for one month that the statue would be gone.

  7. Lanny says:

    This isn’t Elm St in Baldwin. people PAY condo fees so they don’t have to look at 10 blowup snow globes outside their window

  8. Hail Mary! says:

    Never buy in a place that has a homeowners association! You think your local municipality’s council is bad…imagine a bunch of neighbors in your business all the time!

    1. Bill Duke says:

      You are exactly right. Homeowner associations are usually made up of aspiring dictators.

    2. Religious Persecution says:

      Homeowners Ass, and yes I meant to do that, are a bunch of unemployed, bored, old ninnies, who like to snoop around and gossip about the neighbors, and LOVE nothing more than to have POWER over them! These are bored people, with NO friends, who need to GET A LIFE!! They are power mad, and are having great fun doing this to those people. I call it THEFT, and I would’ve called the Police the first day it went missing. I don’t care WHAT organization you’re in, you can’t STEAL someone’s property!! Yes, you can fine them, and they should pay for not moving it. BUT, you canNOT lay a finger on someone else’s property. It THEFT, EXTORTION, whatever you want to call it. It’s a CRIME! Call the Police. They will find the evidence in some Jerk’s possession. And I also wonder, if it was a Muslim Holiday, and it was a Muslim flag or something, WOULD anyone have said ANYthing? I doubt it.

      1. cattyfan says:

        The association has the legal right to remove that statue, since for months they had notified the owners they were not in compliance with the rules that the home owners agreed to before they signed their purchase papers.

        I say this as a Christian…the condo association is right.

    3. Mike says:

      Howdy,
      I live in a place with a homeowners asoc. and am quite happy with it.
      No one is telling this man what he can or can’t do on his property.
      Our homeowners assoc. protects thoughtless morons from reducing my property values by their thoughtlessness.
      There are a few things I am not allowed to do that I’d like to but I agreed not to when I bought here.
      I live by these rules and expect others that live to also.
      I have seen developments around here that have no rules and some places are well kept and surrounded by places shamelessly junked up.

      1. Fluidizer says:

        Its a case by case. If the Association is in opposition of the Constitution, like the one here it should be rendered illegal.

      2. XtianDoctrinezLULZ says:

        Fluidizer, the association isn’t in conflict with the Constitution. This family is still free to worship whatever they want. This isn’t interfering with their rights one bit. It’s about the community’s right to maintain a consistent appearance throughout its property. If the religious nuts want to change the rules of the association. let them lobby to change them.

        The irony in all of this is that the people who consider this “bad” and rail against HOAs are the same ones who are usually for states rights — using the force of government to trample individual freedom. This, though, is entirely voluntary: you can buy a condo or you can buy a place without any kind of restrictions. If left to the devices of “states rights” we’d still have pockets of slavery, of states where women could neither vote nor use birth control, where restaurants and hotels could deny service to blacks or Jews, etc.

  9. dennis says:

    I’ ve lived in neighborhoods with nutzy rules like this, but they supposedly help property values. On the other hand, everyone has had enough of people who become little dictators and get off on controling their neighbors by enforced rules no one cares about – doubt anyone even noticed this little thing below their front window. Luckily in the Dayton area, where so many are Catholic, seeing these little displays is a comforting sight up and down every street – do you think they should be required?? LOL.

  10. Don says:

    Sounds like something the Anthem Arizona HOA (Parkside) would do.

  11. Jim says:

    War on Christmas

    1. Wisguy70 says:

      With a $4,000 fine I don’t think its about Christmas. I don’t think it matters to the home owners association if its Mary or a Smurf. Their position is no items on common ground.

  12. Doug Rose says:

    Still can’t understand why some favor to move into one of the Nazi ruled HOA areas.To afraid of the Riff-raff…………

  13. Jeff says:

    $4000 fine and removing their parking privileges is ridiculous, and abusive.

    1. Observer says:

      People pay less fines for felonies. Enough is enough. Once again it will have to go to court and the only winners are lawyers.

    2. Religious Persecution says:

      Yes, and it would be MUCH cheaper just to buy a new one! lol
      I also think it’s a violation of their right to practice their Religion.

      1. Steve in Iowa says:

        The right to practice their religion? They have every right to practice as they see fit INSIDE their home. I’m 50/50 on this story, and the comments. The rules state no personal property on common grounds, but was there a definition of common grounds in the original HOA agreement the homeowners signed? There’s a lot of questions that are not being asked. Personally, I wouldn’t have a problem with the statue, they’re a tasteful yard decoration, most are kept in good repair.

  14. JoelT says:

    My mother was the President of a Homeowner’s Association and I can tell you, the Association has no choice. It doesn’t matter what the violation is, Virgin Mary, US FLag, Lady Gaga poster. If you let ONE person violate the rules, you can NEVER win another case, and you will have every jerk in the complex breaking the rules. Soon the complex will be a dump, and no one will be able to get their money back when they sell. Associations go to court every day over stuff like this, and it is only when it is a US flag or some religious thing that the “News” people make a story out of it, just to get people riled up and generate ratings. When my mom died, we were able to sell her place for three times what she owed, thanks to the Association and the upkeep they did there. This person needs to SELL their place and buy their own house if they want to put things in their yard.

    1. vergilius says:

      JoelT:

      You gave a good, lucid answer. The common ground outside of a condo is exactly that. It is not the private property of the condo that sits behind it. There is no governmental restriction on religion in this case. The homeowners’ association is not a governmental entity. It has clearly defined rules that are agreed to when a person buys a condo in this particular location.

      1. Wisguy70 says:

        I agree vergilius. I don’t want to live in a condo for this reason, I understand rules why don’t the people who move in to the condos.

      2. SGA says:

        One can still run afoul of the law regarding religion when not a governmental entity (http://www.justice.gov/crt/spec_topics/religiousdiscrimination/). For example, if there was a “No Jews Allowed” sign the wrong would be obvious. This will be a very interesting court case, as both sides have the law on their side. Since there is often more weight on religious freedom, the condo association may have a problem.

    2. themunz says:

      I agree. When you live in such places you are pretty much giving up the right to have such items in exchange for not having to worry about taking care of that space in return.

    3. Paul Mayotte says:

      Your all missing the point. When people are religiously persecuted, those doing the persecution ALWAYS say “just move somewhere else” or “don’t come here”, or “these are the rules, take it or leave it.” If it is something like the color of your house, or how many outbuildings you have that is one thing, but when you say your religious beliefs or your patriotism will not be allowed, that’s when you cross the line. It has nothing to do with the “news” people making a story. It’s got everything to do with repugnant leaders (HOA presidents to country presidents) dictating what you can and cannot believe. Your mother’s enforcement of Nazi like rules (“I was just following orders”) has NOTHING to do with the selling of your mother’s place for three times it’s original price. The dollar has dropped in value by that much over that time and I’m sure the property area is highly valued (even if it were a trailer park you would be getting three times it’s value). Everyone loves their mother but she, and you, for defending her, are wrong, wrong, wrong.

    4. 312capri says:

      That’s why I would never buy property under control of a supposed “Home Owners Association”! One of my son’s dealt with one in Houston, TX. It was a nightmare!

    5. Tim Baker says:

      I clearly understand that, however, it seems common sense is not prevalent. If one is offended and complaines he must be accomodated? Not in this lifetime. I am a traditionalist Jeffersonion American. I shall not waiver, nor shall I concede to tyranny. Cheers.

    6. SGB says:

      I hope they don’t move anywhere near me. I detest cheap statues in yards be they the madonna, budha or garden gnomes. My HOA has clear rules about that. They all do. Mind the rules or leave.

  15. cinvb says:

    I wonder if this had been a Muslin symbol if the HOA would have dared touch it..probably not

  16. Mike Stolee says:

    Generally speaking, this is symptomatic of us developing “communities” that get away from total private ownership. But if you chose to live in one of these (my late parents had, and they regretted every minute of it) “communities”, I’d like to see the next story say that the GLBT “flag” was forced down; or anything Islamic on the “property” told to get down. Face it: my friends working for major corporations were told to get their holy pictures and a Rosary out of sight during the working day or be fired. These same outfits now offer prayer rooms and foot stations for the Muslims. So the Muslims can pray 5 times a day and a business has to accomodate them, but a typical worker with a Rosary on his or her desk can get fired?!! This is out of control. We need to petition our city counsels to stop developing multi-housing and “communes” and start getting back to single, full ownership, properties.

    1. Relious Persecution says:

      You are right. If I BUY a house or condo, I DARE anyone else to tell me what to do with it! Are they paying my mortgage? NO. I am. What are they gonna do, take my house? Let them try! You can’t tell me what to do in or on MY house. And if you try, I gaurantee I can find SOMETHING I don’t like about YOUR house and it will be reported too. Some people move into these places just because they want to terrorize their neighbors. I call it the “Napolitan complex”. Little people who like to push people around. Power trip!

  17. john p says:

    i believe in god ,i believe in bearing arms. if you mess with one,you will meet the other

    1. UraMoron2 says:

      This comment makes perfect sense – to idiots like you who never made it past 3rd grade.
      Your gun money would have been better spent on remedial education.

  18. Gene Zippy says:

    The whole problem is caused by religious self centeredness.

    No one is denying this family’s right to worship. Unless the Bible states that one must put up a statue of Mary in their front yard? It has nothing to do with religious freedom. Its just something he wants to do. Its against the rules of the contract he agreed to. Its a legal matter, not a religious one.

    1. Anthony says:

      Still doesn’t give the association the right to take some one property. I lived in one of these places once they tried to tell me what I could put in my garage. I told him that if he wanted to see daylight tomorrow he better back off. But then again I’m Italian. Never heard from the association again about anything.

  19. comprof says:

    These tyrannical home owner associations need to be done away with. They are no more than a bunch of power hungry potenital tyrants minding everyone’s business but their own.

  20. William R. Smith says:

    Call Tony Soprano and ask him for a BIG favor before it goes to court……that’ll work!

  21. Karl Stalin says:

    Thank god that hideous ceremonial icon is gone. I feel better now and will permit my children to once again walk past that condo without fearing that they will become assimilated into the Vasko cult. My poor daughter has had nightmares for months and now requires psychological intervention to rid her of the “stone beast” as she call it from her young mind. Such immoral decrements are not what this country is all about. Who do they think they are?

    1. SlimShady says:

      Well isn’t that nice Karl. I doubt you ever worried about getting dragged into the “Vasko Cult”. As for your daughter, I would suggest you run up to her room when she’s gone and search for those drugs she’s obviously on. Failing that, you deserve to pay every psychohanalyst’s bill from every shrink you have to go to for bending her mind into a pile of mush with you own issues. But, that’s why you live there, isn’t it?

      1. PIanoguy says:

        Slim, Have trouble recognizing sarcasm, do you? ;p

  22. HOA Manager says:

    1. The First Amendment states CONGRESS shall pass no law, it does not prevent a private association from having it’s own rules.

    2. When he purchased the condo, he signed a lot of papers stating what his responsibilities are and what he is prohibited from doing. He’s gonna loose. The HOA has to enforce the rules in the CC&R’s and the Rules & Regs of the Association. If they fail to do so other homeowners can sue them for their failure to enforce.

    1. George Thibault says:

      No homeowners association can make a rule that limits your inalienable rights to religious freedom. Could a homeowners association make a “rule” that says your first born will be subject to slavery? Signed or not, it is unconstitutional, unethical, and repugnant. Just because you get someone to sign a piece of paper (one, amongst many on the day of signing) does NOT give you the authority to take away that person’s fundamental American rights. The homeowners association is wrong, and they should be fined for every day the Vasco family was prevented from expressing their religious freedom. Disgusting.

      1. Wisguy70 says:

        Signing a contract mean nothing what is the world comming to. Why can’t people just stop moving into condo or follow the rules. As I have said before I will never live in a condo; but, people that choose to agree to the rules when signing a contract.

    2. Mike says:

      The HOAS’s are tin pot dictators and will eventually persecute the wrong, unstable person. They will all be killed in a HOA meeting. Really, it’s inevitable. Perhaps even desirable to make these animals fear the very people they seek to control and persecute. Notice how they ALWAYS use the power of Gov’t to bend others to their will?

    3. Steve Vasko says:

      HOA Manager, look again, No I signed nothing but a marriage license. Again you wrong me! Please before persecuting me and saying what I did, Check your facts!

    4. RB says:

      So what is the name of the HOA involved and who by name sits on the HOA Board?

      If they are so sure of their position I can’t imagine any reason to not stand up and say who they are.

  23. john p says:

    this country was built on religous freedom moron

    1. HOA Manager says:

      Try reading the First Amendment some time. Where does it say you have the right to place your religious objects on someone else’s property?

  24. gov't_h8r says:

    No doubt there were a hundred menorahs or menorrhagias left alone.

  25. Arrrupupupupup says:

    I never understood why anyone would live in a condo. It’s like you own a ‘house’ on someome else’s property, but it’s really not your house. Bizarre!

    1. SGA says:

      Condos are a rich man’s trailer park.

  26. Big Kitchen says:

    HOA’s are ALL evil. What may have been good intentioned in the start has become neighborhood naziism/communism/socialism/progressivism/slavery. No freedom or rights what so ever. Tear them all down. Rise up against the oppression. If you can put planters in your yard, buy toilet stools and paint them and plant plants in them displaying them in your front yard as protests

  27. lvh says:

    It’s called PC “blending”.
    How boring!
    What fun we had growing up in “mixed” neighborhoods.
    Those days are gone.

  28. sigert546346 says:

    I am afraid that I have to agree with the homeowners association on this one.

    Is there not a way to place it where it is not in the common area but can still be seen by the public?

  29. Archbishop George Michael says:

    This issue might fall under the “RELIGIOUS FREEDOM OF INSTITUTIONALIZED PERSONS ACT” which came back in the Clinton Administration. While it was primarily made for person in prisons, it has also been used against any government institution OR AN ENTITY HOLDING ITSELF TO BE SUCH as in the case of Condo Associations and HOAs. In a nutshell, NO GOVERNMENT AGENCY or reasonable faxilime thereof, CAN MADE ANY RULES OR LAWS WHICH INTERFER WITH THE FREEDOM OF THE INDICIDUALS RELIGIOHS EXPRESSION IN THEIR HOME OR ON THEIR PROPERTY. In other words, they cannot stop a minister for having bible study in his home or a priest having open liturgies in his home. The question becomes, where does the Vasko family’s property end and the condo property begin?

    1. HOA Manager says:

      It wasn’t in his home or on his property. It was in the common area owned by the HOA. No individual owns the common property, it is owned by the HOA.

      1. gilda says:

        And your HOA by laws state that if an issue has not been adressed within 1 year it is considered approved. The statue was in place for over 10 years before you started harassing us.

    2. Steve Vasko says:

      Actually there is a great deal of stuff hanging all over the place and that is fine with me, And as I seen the Condo Assoc. They been putting up Christmas decor that’s fine. what I find funny is Without The Blessed Mother to be Chosen by God as His Wife to conceive Jesus- we wouldn’t have Christmas so there is rather a oxymoron in understandings I guess.

      Archbishop- Its in a limited common are and if anyone is in that area for any purpose of anyone condo its actually just to look in there windows. Its actually a no nothing zone but for utilities and the door off my office is at. What the Management Co. didnt inform anyone is This was taken to court and dismissed as well as it was moved to were the President of The Board said to move it and it would be fine..not fined!

  30. George Johnson says:

    You morons. Not enough information here.

    Did the HOA people warn them?? I’m betting, not.

    These kinds of people are failed politicians and generally go by the NAZI rules by default.

    1. pianoguy says:

      Uh, George, did YOU read the article? The HOA has been fining the Vasko’s for MONTHS now because of the “Violation”. That might be perceived as warning them, wouldn’t it?

      OTOH, HOA’s are often run by the people you would least likely let into your private life. Maybe the Vasko’s have some complicity as well. People can get pretty silly when it comes to stuff like this.

  31. Steve Fournier says:

    This HOA is lucky that the true religion of peace is Christianity. If Christianity had the equivalent of the Muslim Hoodlums who undergo the so-called jihad (AKA hit men), these weasel HOA folks would never have dared to take the statue…. Maybe Catholicism should create its own “jihadists.”

  32. David from Texas says:

    As much as I don’t like HOA’s, this is a case where I would be thankful that the HOA is taking a stand. Religious nuts like this guy always think that the world revolves around them. They display their religiosity for everyone else to see, and impose their idolatry upon neighbors who would rather NOT have to put up with it…The HOA in this case is protecting the religious freedom of its members by keeping its common grounds free of idolatry.

    The first settlers of this country (the puritans of England) fled Europe to be in a place where idol worship was not imposed upon them… The irony in this case is that this idiot thinks that it is he who is suffering religious persecution… rather it is the other way around.

    1. David from Texas says:

      The man in this story wants the freedom to persecute his neighbors by imposing his idolatry upon them. He signed a contract that he would not place objects in the common areas of the condominium project. He has violated that contract in a most egregious way by imposing idolatry upon his neighbors.

      Did you see what he said?

      “I made a promise to the Blessed Mother and I’m keeping it,” Vasko said. “And this is about her. This isn’t about me.”

      This is really about him imposing his religion upon his neighbors.

      This is a free country. He has the freedom to move to another place where the HOA would allow such religious practices. Instead he chooses to violate the contract he signed, and chooses to persecute his neighbors with his idolatry.

      1. lvh says:

        “This is really about him imposing his religion upon his neighbors.”

        Or his neighbors imposing there preferences on him.

  33. ricko says:

    HAHA after this property values will PLUMMET…who would dumb enough to pay full price to live in a place like this…Americans are pretty dumb so….

    ALWAYS PAY LESS IN AN HOA…25% OR MORE low-ball with the house price, and then you can afford the $4k fine..every so often.

  34. Thomas says:

    Americans deserve the NAZI pasting they are about to receive by the New World Gestapo. I have traveled the world for 50+ years and I have yet to see a people more stupid than Americans. They eagerly wave forward the anti-American dictators to come and destroy their heritage and their children’s future.

    1. George O says:

      Exactly, Thomas. Good comment.

    2. Locke says:

      That’s like saying an infant deserves to be beaten for soiling a diaper.
      The average citizen in America is zombified because we are under hardcore chemical and psychological warfare by the globalists.
      The fluoride, GMO and TV have taken their toll.

  35. Bilford Rielly says:

    Home Owners Associations are nothing but a bunch of Nazis.

    I made damn sure I didn’t buy my house where there is one or there would have been some badly beat up Association Nazis.

    Power Hungry Controling Lib/Commie/Dem/Pedophiles are all Home Owners Associations are.

  36. meadowlands says:

    I think the HOA should return the statue and the homeowner should keep it inside. If everyone put things outside their condo the place would look trashy. BTW I am Catholic. I don’t think it is a matter of religious discrimination. I think the BVM would understand

  37. me myself n i says:

    NAZI stands for “National Socialist German Workers’ Party” key word is “Socialist”. . . the people who go around calling anyone who differs on opinion nazi and racist have much more in common with nazi’s than those they name call.

  38. test says:

    You have to break this down a bit.
    1) If he is a new resident and knew that he always likes to place certain things exterior of his dwelling, then he should have disclosed that and gotten a waiver before signing on the bottom line to get the condo.
    2) If he has been there many years and has always had this exact item every year until they started fining him then they should back off. If they are spreading the fines equally to multiple offenders they might can avoid the label of offensiveness against a specific religion.

  39. Chris pm says:

    This is outright insanity, I couldn’t agree more with the family and their value God bless them and may the stand tall and fight the good fight of faith. I’m from Brooklyn ny and read their story online and felt compelled to respond.

  40. You never own a Condo says:

    Buy you own property and ‘to h*ll’ with the control freaks. They give you trouble, then you can cuss them out or build a fence. I’ve done both, as well as taking a shot at thieves at 1 a.m.who were on my property. tTry that in Condo complex and see where you end up!

  41. fritz von says:

    Use your head, if you’re gonna have to pay a $4000 fine, at least put a $1000 into making sure that they can’t remove it quickly in the middle of the night. VIDEO them digging up the statue, ham it up like the liberals do. Read, “Rules for Radicals”. Smarten up, strike back, grow balls! Stop rolling over and giving in.

  42. George O says:

    What happened to my comments. Is there someone moron picking and choosing which ones are to be shown.

    I’ve written to the editor about this and I’ve suggested to him that this is exactly why people a canceling their subscrptions to the paper. He needs to call in the screeners and let them know they’re costing the company a lot of money. Screeners should be fired.

  43. George O says:

    Now the moronic screener is changing my punctuation!!! Unbelievable.

  44. Locke says:

    Theft is theft. I would press charges against the Home Owners Assoc. and all the board members for grand theft, they says it’s worth $4k, that’s felony level theft. And I would sue them personally for extortion and theft, and religious persecution.

    Really though, only join a Homeowners Association if you are a hardcore commie, who loves being ground into dust.

    1. Mr. Peanut says:

      Hi Locke,
      If someone leaves something on your property and you ask them to remove and they don’t and you do is that theft?
      Oh,also,how do you get a Catholic priest to sleep with a nun? Dress her up like an alter boy!
      There are more nuts in this thread than a Planters can.
      Killers,butt kickers. Are you people all nuts?A lot of you are.

  45. George O says:

    I’ve received an E-mail back from the Editor. He states that the screener is and overweight female who has been hired only teporarily. Perhaps things will improve once the week is up.

  46. InTheBubble says:

    This Vaskos needs to chalk off the statue as penalty for their own stupidity and excessive religious zeal and MOVE out of that place into a house of their own where they can do as they wish.

  47. Miguel says:

    Someone is going to have to find these homeowner association-ists and render them with broken arms and legs as a first reminder that they have no right to attack any American’s religious beliefs. Every associate member needs this to happen over and over until they realize they have no such rights to theft and criminal attacks upon religious icons.

  48. George O says:

    Microcephalic and obese screeners are the kiss of death for a newspaper attempting to establish itself on the Internet. They must learn not to hire the unattractive from the National Association of English Majors. These people are losers and should not be judging comments.

  49. SarahTX2 says:

    Extortion? No, it’s called following the rules. The same rules that would prohibit another from putting a 150-pound spaghtetti monster out there. Duh.

  50. ww3 says:

    catholics worship non-god statues that is why they are not christian

    1. Karen says:

      Sorry, but you’re an idiot.

      1. Non pagan says:

        Sorry Karen but you are the idiot. Catholics are nothing more than pagan idolatrous who use non biblical things like rosary beads, saying hail Mary, calling priests “father”, going to confession, baptizing a baby to indoctrinate them, etc. the list goes on and on.

  51. Rick Smith says:

    Anyone who signs a covenant, or joins a homeowner’s association
    must check their freedom at the door.
    I’d rather live in a Winnebago in Death Valley than sign over my
    individuality to the hive.
    Once you become part of the Borg, resistance is futile.

  52. I'mNo1Important says:

    If the background on this story is correct, then the Vasko family have broken 2 rules.
    1) Common ground is just that – common – for everyone in the communities enjoyment. Not for an individuals opportunity to express onto others their own personal convictions. That is what the “inner rooms” of their dwelling are for.
    2) “Thou shalt not have any idols before me”

    Seems like Mr Vasko is just looking for his 5 minutes of fame at The Lords expense

    1. Karen H. says:

      Hey, do you have pictures of your family members? IF so, WHY? Are they not ‘idols’ that you worship, But I bet your little church has a creche at Christmas…andi bet there is an ‘idol’ of Mary in it too. Take your anti-Catholicism and shove it.K

      1. I'mNo1Important says:

        Karen, you are wrong. I do not belong to a church. I read. Photos are ok as long as they are not venerated. Do yourself a favor and do some research. Christmas has no scriptural basis and is built on pagan origins. Your attitude at the end of your comment tells me you would would have been one of those in the crowd yelling “Impale him”

      2. Geroge O says:

        Not only is No1 a Catholic basher, but now he reveals himself as a virulant snti-semitic Jew basher. He really has a fixation against those who yell “Crusify Him!”

      3. I'mNo1Important says:

        Karen
        “Yeah, he’s so ‘learned’ he thinks Catholics are actually ‘veneratie;’ the material the statue was made out of. /What a dummy. Doubt if he’s was a Methodist ever though.”

        Your comprehension of my statement is as astounding as your knowledge of the scriptures, history and the English language. Unbelievable

    2. George O says:

      Yes, a typical Catholic basher you are. You’re probably one of those strict Methodists. I’ve seen the trays of leathered-handled switches they sell after services. These are for giving their kids a good switching so they grow up to be strict Methodists like their parents. “I’m No1Improtant” is no doubt a chronic mastrubator from the Methodist community.

      1. Karen says:

        Yeah, he’s so ‘learned’ he thinks Catholics are actually ‘veneratie;’ the material the statue was made out of. /What a dummy. Doubt if he’s was a Methodist ever though.

      2. David from Texas says:

        No1 knows what he/she is talking about.

        Christmas does not have any scriptural basis. Why do you think that Christmas had been banned in New England for so long? Answer: the puritans of New England actually read their Bibles. They knew that Christmas was pagan in origin.

        If you don’t think that Catholicism does not venerate Mary, then I have a bridge to sell you in Brooklyn.

      3. I'mNo1Important says:

        George O, how does referring to a fact in the scriptures make me an virulant anti-semitic Jew basher.. FYI, I never mentioned the race of the crowd. While the majority were Jewish, there was other races among them. Read the scriptures, Christ’s first disciples were from the Jewish nation and thru Gods Love, the opportunity to serve has been opened to “People of all Nations”. It is no wonder your voice is so loud on this thread as you, just like the Vasko’s are trying to make an issue when there really is none!

    3. Gilda Vasko says:

      The by laws of our condominium association clearly state “If an issue has not been addressed within a year, it is considered approved by the association.” The statue of the Blessed Mother was in place for over 10 years before the current Board of Directors began harassing us about it. Perhaps they should follow their own rules!

      1. Jarhead68 says:

        If that’s true, then you will win in court. Good luck. I’m sick of the war on Christianity and I’m an agnostic. No other religion is being assailed the way Christianity and particularly Catholicism is.

      2. David from Texas says:

        Do you not have any concern or respect for your neighbors?

        Are you not commanded as a Christian to do unto others as you would have them do unto you?

        How would you feel if a Muslim neighbor of yours began broadcasting with a loud speaker outside your door morning calls to prayer every morning at 5:00 AM? Do you not realize that statues of the virgin Mary can be just as offensive to protestant Christians as being awakened every morning by a call to prayer of another religion?

        People enter into HOA agreements for a reason. They prefer to live in a community of like minded individuals who decide beforehand to a set of ground rules. If you cannot accept or abide by those ground rules, then you should not have signed the HOA agreement in the first place. You are violating the agreement, and you are treating your neighbors with contempt.

        Learn to be at peace with all men. Submit to those in authority over you. Please read the Bible.

      3. thomas warner says:

        Good for you , Gilda !

  53. Jennifer says:

    Seriously? $4,000??? Not even the police departments fine people that much for such minor offenses. The association is out of bounds.

    1. David from Texas says:

      Actually, the HOA appears to have been very patient with these folks. The fines are probably stipulated in the HOA agreement. The fact that the fines have added up to $4000.00 demonstrates the intransigence of the Vasko’s.

      The HOA could foreclose on the property for unpaid fines… Instead, they have chosen to other means, for the time being, to try and convince the Vasko’s to stop this nonsense, such as removing and confiscating the religious icon and removing
      parking privileges.

      HOA’s are not to be messed with. They win in court almost all of the time. The Vasko’s would be wise to stop this nonsense, or else the costs could be much higher.

  54. George O says:

    Your moderation is awaiting comment.

    Work is the curse of the drinking class.;

  55. Henry Thoreau says:

    This is a matter of private property. If he doesn’t own the land, then it’s not within his Rights to place anything on it. A statue or a rock or a car.

    If “common property” means it is his property in partial ownership, then it is his Right to put it on his part of the common property. It’s a legal issue, not a moral one. Oh, and I’m Roman Catholic. I’ll be the first one to kick you in the balls if you ban religion because it makes a happy commi. But this ain’t that situation.

  56. Art says:

    they chose to live there, then hey chose the rules that apply, simple!

  57. jackie A says:

    SHAME ON ALL!.Isn’t there more important things to do then crucify the man who believes. We allow a mosque to be built in NY where so many americans died…no one is in uproar… Can’t we let a christian have a statue of the Blessed Mother under his window.. there is no rules, moral, standers no values….our only goal is to crucify man. Merry CHRIST-MAS! and GOD BLESS EACH AND EVERY ONE WHO BELIEVES IN GOD AND THE BLESSED MOTHER.
    Let me know where this complex is and maybe I can get a collection to help this gentleman for CHRIST-MAS

  58. George says:

    Well old trailer trash me who drinks cheap beer or so say someand lives on his ten acres in Florida. The pit bull dogs and others, all rescues, don’t seem to mind what I put up or take down. I think the Home Owners association should come visit and let me explain why he should have his statue. I bet me the dogs , my guns and my religion could mke them change their minds at least till they got off the properity. Stupid let him keep the statue sure a lot btter than some gang graffeti.

  59. Bill B. says:

    This is really simple, folks. If you buy/rent a condo or home, you will most certainly sign a contract. If that contract has HOA covenants that prohibit certain things (like this statue), then either sign it and abide to the terms of the contract or don’t sign it and find somewhere else to live. To summarize the legal terms, an HOA covenant is an agreement and promise that you agree to abide by certain things. He signed it before he moved in. End of story.

    If you don’t like HOAs, there are plenty of places to live that don’t have them. It’s a free market. If there is more demand for HOA or non-HOA housing, it will be built accordingly. Find the housing that makes you happy (with or without a HOA), but don’t sign a friggin’ contract and then complain later.

    This has nothing to do with religion or Nazis. It’s simple contract law.

  60. Militant Christian says:

    Anyone stupid enough to sign up to a H.O.A., which is nothing more than communism – by the very definition – deserves what they get. Fill the wall space with dead fish, feces, and anything else that will leave a long-lasting, impossible to clean odor and move. After they have to tear the building down, the wonderful H.O.A. wcan have more commune ground.

  61. MJ says:

    This is part of your Obama nation.

  62. Mr. Truth says:

    It’s the rules of the HOA. If the resident signed the agreement, then the resident should abide by them. They can always meet to have the rules changed. But until then, the resident must comply. Or move.

  63. ske says:

    When does someone else s rights step on your rights. If you do not believe in Jesus or any god, why would it really bother you. I am not a Buddhist, but I do not even think twice when I see a budda statue. I am not offended when people celebrate Hanukkah or decorate for Hanukkah. Christians cannot have the ten commandments in public, they can’t say Merry Christmas, caroling is gone, you might offend someone. Stupid. But if the HOA gave the family notices to remove the statue then they should have removed it. Once you get involved with a HOA you are at their mercy. But we have to stop worrying about offending one or two people, Christians have the right to continue to celebrate Christmas decorations and all. If the bulk of families in the HOA area are unhappy with this decsion then they need to fight it together and better yet became of member of the board of the HOA make your opinions known.

  64. Riteaidbob says:

    Power hungry NAZI homeowner association PUKES!

  65. Daniel McCarthy says:

    Just post the names and their addresses on the web who are responsible for this. Let the public handle it the way it should be handled. Let the town know who is bothers by such things. Let the public know who these people are. Let others confront htem also. I am not sure what kind of fine is legal either. I wouldn’t pay a red cent. Remember, if you die fighting for something that is true and right, you have lived for something. Don’t give up ever!!!!!

  66. Joe ThePimpernel says:

    HOAs are evil. but nobody forces you to purchase property that will be under the control of an HOA.

    Simple solution; don’t buy an HOA-controlled property.

  67. marilyn says:

    I am so very glad that I live somewhere where I have NO homeowner’s association and I can plant what I want to plant, decorate how I want to decorate and do what I want to do in “my house”! When I put my manger scene out tomorrow, I will do it with pride!!!

  68. John West says:

    If that was a muslim family sporting a statue of Moe Hamm Add, this would never dare happen.

    1. Jarhead68 says:

      Uh, Muslims don’t HAVE statues of The Great Pedophile Mohammed. It is forbidden that they make an image of The Great Satan. Remember the Danish cartoon fiasco? Having said that, what if they had a statue of their favorite warrior Saladin on the front lawn? They’d be out in the streets about now turning over cars and burning businesses to the ground.

  69. tomas says:

    Befel ist befel ! Welcome to the new world order and political correctness.

  70. IO says:

    Ironic, coming from a state that appears to tolerate child m0lesters and animal abusers in their sports programs you would think the Virgin Mary would get a break. Just think what the comment would have been if this were a Brown or Ravens flag???

    She broke the rules to an agreement they entered into to live there. Geesh, lighten up people.

  71. Steve says:

    Rules are rules and he agreed to them. BUT … theft is theft, and the association should be up on charges of theft. He’ll pay his fine, and the association should do jail time for their theft.

  72. Jenn Adlam says:

    Oh TOTAL BS…. Look I have no problem with their love of the Virgin Mary but common ground is just that. Common. AND a REALLY tacky statue does not belong there. PERIOD. And they KNEW IT. And refused to follow the rules. We have laws and rules for a reason Anarchy sucks.

  73. Jeremy C says:

    The condo association enforced the rules of the HOA. Those rules are fully spelled out in the contract for sale and purchase of any real property. The condo owner agreed to these rules when he purchased the condo. No one forced him (or anyone) to buy the property and thusly abide by the HOA. He chose to live in an HOA controlled environment and he chose to break the rules by putting the statue. This is clearly and solely a breach of contract. Do not forget that the bible says “render unto Ceaser…”

    To those that wish to vilify HOA controlled properties I simply say do not buy one! You have very right to purchase property that is non HOA controlled. Do not forget that if I wish to purchase HOA controlled property I have every right to do so. We both have equally valid reasons to purchase/not purchase and we both should be respectful of each others God given right to choose. If you were to take away the ability to purchase HOA properties or if I were to force all properties to be under HOA control either instance would be fascism at its finest; we certainly wouldn’t want that would we?

  74. John Scott says:

    uhhhhhhhhhhh where was I ????

  75. Jeffrey R Barry says:

    Lemme see – If a member of the association put a concrete statue of a man sodomizing a child in front of their residence, my guess is there would be a lot less fuss. The Vaskos were aware of the rules when they bought the property. You can’t sign a contract and then be surprised when the association wants to enforce the rules. This isn’t an issue of content, it is a matter of making an adult decision to buy a property with rules, and then following those rules.

  76. Dustin says:

    the law has been broken

    clearly

    the decision of whether or not they can keep the item there is still up for debate
    however, they were not within their legal right to move the item
    they must have made a written request to have it moved

    you will find this is substantiated in previous court battles

  77. KickTheKenyanOut2012 says:

    The HOA President didn’t want Obama the Muslim to be offended –

  78. perseus317 says:

    I am a christian, and have grown up with a reverence for the mother of Jesus. HOWEVER, this is NOT an issue of religious persecution. By placing the statue in the common area, the condo owner is clearly violating the agreement that he had to agree with when he moved into the condo. If the association allows this man to place the statue in the common area, they must also allow muslims, jews, wicans, devil worshipers, atheists, etc. to put up THEIR symbols in the common area. The result, of course, would be chaos, and the courts will agree. If this man wants to display his statue, let him put it in a window INSIDE of his condo. This, I’m sure, would NOT violate the restrictions imposed by the association’s condo ownership agreement. We all have to recognize the even freedoms have limits, and we are not free to impose our religion on others in an in-your-face sort of way.

  79. stoptouchingthatmabel says:

    Homeowner’s associations are one of the most intolerant groups to be found anywhere in America.

  80. Andy Hunter says:

    When you sign a contract you are bound by the contract. Anything else in this case is just a distraction.

  81. FLOYD IN FLORIDA says:

    RULES ARE RULES JACK!
    If this goes to court the condo owner will loose! When and before you move in they have you sign a contract that you will abide by the rules!
    i Don’t care if it is a statue, rainbow or American flag you sign the agreement if you don’t like it MOVE!

  82. TexasForever says:

    HOA definitely must be Obama ” sheeple”?
    Who else would object to ” Peace on Earth and Goodwill to all Men”.

  83. cajunwarthog says:

    If you are dumb enough to move your family into a house/condo that has a HOA,,, your problem….. You gave up your “rights” when you moved in.

  84. Gilda Vasko says:

    I am asking that you all say a prayer for those us involved in this dispute.
    Thank you

  85. Jesus says:

    “I am a Christian and I am offended by this man’s ignorance in wanting to worship an image” That was the comment of an obvious protestant. The Catholic Church is the only true Church Jesus founded and statues are like the pictures you look at but they are in full 3-D and we do not worship them so learn about the only Church Jesus founded.

    As for this case, if the rules state people cannot place things on common ground then this is not a religious matter and the people need to pay the fine. We do not now and never have lived in a Theocracy in the States. The States has always been a secular nation with a strong secular constitution that specifically makes it clear there is to be separation between Church and State. We hold the most secular constitution on earth. Our nation was not founded on Religion but Religious is tolerated thank God.

    As for Protestant, that means to protest the one and only true Church founded when Christ founded the Catholic Church and made Saint Peter our first Pope. Protestants can be Christian and also “saved” as they call it which is have salvation however; Jesus founded his Church so we could be in fullness with him on earth too. We have the body of Christ in the Catholic Church like the Bible commands and we have respect for the Mother of God because without Mary there would be no Christmas. Protestant radicals are destroying this nation. I pray Newt wins the nomination so a huge radical will be defeated in the general election.

    1. David from Texas says:

      Dream on… Your attitudes towards protestants is exemplified by displaying venerated images (idols) as a way to thumb noses against protestants. The Vaskos are doing exactly that, even to the point of violating a covenant that they agreed to and signed with their neighbors.

      The earliest settlers to this land from Europe were thousands of people who fled persecution that your so-called “only true Church” committed. If the Cathiloic church was and is the “only true Church” as you say, then why did Jesus address 7 churches in the book of Revelation?

      You say that prrotestants “can be Christian and also ‘saved’ as they call it which is have salvation…” Do you not know what the Catholic church has said and ruled on these matters?

      If the Catholic church truly had respect for Mary, then it would not have adopted pagan practices of venerating images of her, and it would to have elevated her to a position of co-redemptrix.

      Attitudes such as yours are exactly why millions of people were very nervous about electing JFK as president. Let’s hope that Newt Gingrich is mostly Catholic in name only. Otherwise, dark days lie ahead.

  86. One rule for some says:

    Let’s see them try that with a Muslim family. Of course they wouldn’t because they would be in big trouble on a lot of fronts.

  87. R Anderson says:

    The issue is legal and not religious. I’ve lived in condos and lived in single family homes. There is a difference. This man should live in a single family home, or he should do the legal work to change his condo association’s laws. Nobody is going to do it for him.

  88. Mike Gauthier says:

    If it was me, violence is the only thing they understand

  89. HB says:

    When you buy property in this country, you agree to certain deed restrictions, covenants, etc… In a condo, the restrictions are even tougher, because you share the outside of the property with the other owners. If you want to make your own rules, get a couple of acres, and build your home on that, but DON’T sign the deed restrictions and THEN complain after you break the rules and get caught.

    These people placed an item on land that they don’t exclusively own, plain and simple. Then the media creates a story out of it in order to grab attention and readers. Happens every year at this time…

  90. Khevin says:

    Mary is simply exercising her rights to ‘occupy’ any piece of land she wants. The Family is now awaiting funds from the 1% to procure a manger but will settle for a tent.

  91. MZStitch says:

    This story has nothing to do with religious freedom. It has nothing to do with religion period. This story has to do with the condo owner not following the rules of the condo. The homeowners association has rules to follow, you sign these rules when purchasing the condo. This same thing would likely have happened if he put a garden gnome.

  92. John D says:

    Who’s to blame? The homeowners I am afraid. If they purchased a condo, and were well awared of the rules, and broke those rules fully knowing the causality of that, they are the only ones at fault here. I am a Catholic born and raised and semi-practicign (hah) and grew up in Brooklyn with TONS of religious statues outside. However. Tht is because it was on private property. When one buys a condo they are really buying nothing more than the right to inhabit an apartment like area for a set amount of time. They “own” nothing and must follow the rules of the HMA. I do not agree with that – which is why by choice I do NOT live in a condo.

  93. Tom says:

    The lesson here, is not live with a HOA, you are just a prostitute.

  94. Frank says:

    these homeowner associations have some VERY funny rules. While they say all ground is common, they will allow some folks to build decks which clearly violate that rule. Not to mention grills and American flags. While there is good cause to have them, there is clearly times when common sense, individuals obsessed with power, and individual prejudice take away the property rights afforded under the Constitution. Best to make sure of the rules before you buy into these shams.

  95. dsands47 says:

    Does the Universe harbor an Absolute or Infinity ??
    And would it happen to have three particular attributes ??
    (mathematically)
    And are they familar and knowable ??
    The answer to all three is YES !!

  96. John Bubblo says:

    “This is religious persecution” the same way it is “This is racial profiling” friend. Christ ordered you live in the world, but not be of the world, and to give to Caesar what is Caesar and to God what is God’s. In other words obey the law but follow God.

  97. Shawn P says:

    Home Owners Associations are a microcosm of the Democrat Party mentality.

    “That which I don’t personally like, I will pass a “law” to ban, merely because I personally don’t like it.”

  98. killerbee says:

    Wanna bet a statue of the god-like Obama would have been just fine.

  99. M&M says:

    Too many rules and regulations when living in a Homeowners Association. Plan to move out or put up with it. While I’m sympathetic to your religious beliefs, you’re not going to win this one. However, read the Declaration to see if they have the right to deny you access to your parking space. You may win that one. .

  100. Chicago Jack says:

    I have to go with the Condo association SORT OF on this one…the sort of is because while I too celebrate Christmas in this Christian Judeo nation and have for 47 years, about 40 of them were NON PC INFECTED HOLIDAYS that just don’t exist anymore sadly. That is until we finally decide to kick all these illegals and half illegal visa holders to the curb and limit all immigration and to protect our borders and stop letting terrorists and spies in like Flynn right under our freaking noses day in and day out..

    But now as the new America turns from melting pot to third world cesspool, I don’t want statues of freaking Muhammad or Buddha or this guy or that guy around everywhere either, so I can see these things limited to private property and churches nowadays to keep the whiny Muslims and agitating atheists off the street corners every Holiday season. Just put the stuff in the windows where they can’t touch it and it really angers them!! That’s what I DO.

    Believe you me, I’m as sick of them as the Totalitarian governments and ‘associations’ we have popping up everywhere thanks to this near communal living in condo’s, apartments and townhouses filling up with illegals and immigrants more than anything and these ‘newcomers’ refuse to assimilate and if left to their own devices half the places would look like Fred Sanford’s front yard in no time.

    Believe me, I know, as the Chicago northwest burbs where I live have been turned from one of the greatest places to live to a freaking living nightmare and nothing LESS. Between O’Barry’s trashing the economy and the theft by the globalists they’re selling for a song and just about ANYONE can buy one STILL and the ‘advocates’ for these people are squeezing em in whenever and wherever possible to plant their country’s flag on our land.,

    even after the meltdown Obama’s team is right back to forcing loans on banks from likely deadbeats who have nothing tying them to the community other than a cash paying yard job, a DUI or some other crime committed under one of their many aliases and the Southern Border.

  101. Gnarly says:

    These worthless, hateful homeowner associations violate the Constitution (in this case, the 1st Amendment) all over our nation. Homeowner associations should be banned and those who serve in their leadership should be held accountable, placed in prison or fined themselves. They are usually petty busybodies without real lives who are micro-dictators of their little worlds. In this case, they are obviously rampant hateful atheists, but they often are anarchists who don’t like American flags and other symbols of national pride. Meet a homeowner association leadership member and you will be meeting an enemy of the nation and of God.

  102. danthefan says:

    this person talks about this statue like its a real person. bible say not to have ANY graven images before him. if the statue was in a common area then he is wrong for putting it there. i think unlike congress the home owners association and this gentleman needs to meet and come to an agreement.
    mary was just a person, she was never meant to be worshipped or prayed to.

  103. epsigafoos says:

    I despise Homeowners Associations and for that reason will never ever live in a home that has an association. I lived in one years ago and we had one board member who ran around with a ruler to measure peoples grass to see if it was higher than the permitted association rules. However, when you move into a house or condominium with an association and they hand you the homeowners rule book, you sign a paper agreeing to abide by the rules. If you don’t want the rules, don’t buy a condo or house that has an association. You agreed to not put statues on common ground when you moved in there so don’t.

  104. Jane Fulmer says:

    Time to fire your homeowner association. The tyranny of many homeowner associations is just not worth having them. Across America, there are anti religious movements to restrict and bully us into giving up our right to worship as we choose. Cities and individuals are bullied and threatend with legal suits. To defend yourself, you are forced to bankrupt yourself or just give up and submit to the tryanny of a few..I notice no one tries to restrict Islam’s religious expressions because they might get there heads lopped off. My conclusion is that they are not onlyoppurtunistic bullies, but the are cowardsm too.

  105. Finbar says:

    If you move into a private community, you give up some rights. That’s why you read the covenants before you buy.

  106. Olden Atwoody says:

    Dear Lord, protect me from your followers.

  107. Czechbikr says:

    One cannot hang a BIRD FEEDER outside of their condos. Is that ecological persecution? He broke the rule, flaunted it and taunted the HOA, after he had agreed to live according to the bylines of the agreement. The HOA should return his staute, forgive his fine and restore his privileges in return for his agreement to sell his unit if he cannot figure out how to live within it’s declarations.

  108. Dale says:

    Being a Catholic, and owning property in a homeowners association, I completely agree with this ruling. You know the rules set forth and typically you sign the agreement. If this is a violation, then no matter what it is, it must come down. If you don’t take it down, you get fined according to the rules. If you don’t like it, don’t live in a place with HOA. I own a HOA property, but I would NEVER live in one, I rent it out. Too many restrictions for the common society’s benefit, a Democrat/Socialist would love these places.

    1. daisy says:

      ‘ I own a HOA property, but I would NEVER live in one, I rent it out. Too many restrictions for the common society’s benefit, a Democrat/Socialist would love these places.”

      Amen.

  109. Shrebbard says:

    I live in a condo and my little front porch is away from sight of the street. We are not even allowed a nice looking wrought iron chair and side table so we can sit and have a cup of coffee on our own stoop.

  110. pete campbell says:

    In a condominium, their “land” is strictly INSIDE the unit. Everything beyond THAT is “common area” They can’t erect a statue of ANYTHING. The fact it is the Blessed Mother doesn’t matter. If everybody in that building put their favorite statue up outside, it would look like a pawn shop. If you don’t like H.O.A.’s
    (been there done that, hate ’em) DON’T MOVE INTO ONE!!!

  111. Geddy says:

    The only defendable position the HOA had was to say that the statue was litter on common grounds, picked it up and tossed it. They made a mistake in stealing the statue and demanding payment for it’s return.

  112. JoeTheFilmmaker says:

    My neighbor tried to gate our neighborhood and turn it into an HOA that he would manage. Luckily 100% of the neighborhood slammed their doors in his face. And the funny thing is that he is employed as a SEIU employee for a neighboring city.

  113. Reuben Cogburn says:

    Homeowners associations are nothing more than gangs of liberal Nazis (usually headed by an obnoxious harpee or a browbeaten male) imposing their warped and unconstitutional left wing agenda on people.

  114. nolainpit says:

    I agree that this man should follow the rules of the HOA that he agreed to upon purchase of the condo. However, I also think he should place the statues inside his condo in front of every window and open the curtains for all to see (unless the HOA has a rule about that too). If not, then too bad for the HOA.

  115. Cathy says:

    The HOA obviously has money to burn in this case. The court costs associated with the lawyer bills and legal fees, not to mention the negative publicity from their ill- thought removal will be substantial. This is the money of all the home- owners they will be spending to go after the family. I bet HOA fees will be increasing rather a lot to cover the costs.

  116. nolainpit says:

    I agree this man should follow the rules of the HOA he agreed to upon purchase of the condo. I also think he should place his statues inside in front of every window and open the curtains for all to see (unless his HOA has a rule about that too). If not, too bad for the HOA.

  117. Robert g says:

    I would be pressing charges with the police for theft. Cars sit on common ground but if you take somebody elses car you end up in jail.

  118. John W says:

    He should have gotten a lawyer after the 1st $100 dollar fine.

  119. Penny says:

    The ‘Association’ should have notified them immediately (within a month) of the violation. It should never have gotten to the point of a $4000 fine. That is just crazy. Sound like power crazy to me.
    I refuse to live anywhere one of these ‘Associations’ have jurisdiction.

  120. ed says:

    Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. Render unto God what is God’s.

  121. phil says:

    it has nothing to do with religion. The area is a common area and you can’t just annex a piece of it and leave whatever you like there. When everyone does that the place looks like a dump and no one is happy. This guy is a moron with a short memory who can’t remember that he signed an agreement not to do what he’s doing.

  122. Roddy Poper says:

    Get the names, addresses, phone numbers and Emails of this so-called Homeowners Association out – we Christian soldiers will take care of the rest.

  123. RB says:

    What is the name of the HOA and who by name is in charge of this organization?

    The name of the victim was published so give us the names of the other side of the argument.

  124. TGC says:

    Anyone stupid enough to purchase a home that is controlled by a HOA deserves whatever they get! What is it America, not enough control over you? The Fed, the state, the city, the county….they don’t control you enough…you are willing to pay a HOA to take even more control of your life? I have never, and will never live anywhere that an HOA has any control.

  125. SC says:

    Join the board and use their own rules against them, Especially get a lawyer and every time one of the board members says something against you and the HOA retaliates sue them in small claims court. A friend did this and the Nazis on the board finally backed down

  126. Joe Drager says:

    When all else fails, resort to violence.

  127. Ann says:

    CHRISTIAN BASHING IS ALIVE AND WELL IN AMERICA — WILL WE HAVE CAMPS NEXT??? JUST ASKING—

  128. Enoch_Root says:

    Homeowners Associations are comprised primarily of busy-bodies. unhappy teacher’s pets. If you’ve even interacted with these types of folks, you know they are the school marms and bored, childless women who aren’t happy until everyone is as miserable as they are.

  129. John Malverne says:

    They knew the rules regarding such items whjen they moved there. If you don’t like the rules, move somewhere else.

    This issue has nothing to do with religion. It’s about legally binding agreements.

  130. RobbieK says:

    TO ALL THE HOAs OUT THERE, LET IT BE KNOWN THAT HOAs ARE UNCONSTITUTIONAL & forms of TYRANNY! All it takes is one person taking an HOA to court in challenge of it’s constitutionality for the HOA to be dismantled.

  131. Ralloh says:

    People move into these places controlled by homeowner’s associations, knowing the rules, then complain when the rules are upheld. I don’t get it.

  132. Robert g says:

    Who ever has the statue should be arrested for possession of stolen property and left to rot in jail.

  133. p.w. stantiford says:

    HOA’s are nothing but little nazi parties. Why anyone would choose to own property under those conditions is beyond me.

  134. Mike_in_Kyiv says:

    Good luck on not getting fined. In this case the Blessed Mother gets hozed and the guy pays the fine. He should have known what the consequences were by SIMPLY READING HIS CONDO DOCS. If it means this much and he’s a man of principle, he gets out of the condo and gets a private dwelling where he can decorate his yard as he likes.

  135. Wake Up says:

    If rules are rules, then what about the most important set of rules – the US Constitution?

    Remember these words “the free excersize of religion may not be infringed”

    or do we pick and choose the parts of the Constitution that are in vogue? What if they ignore the rest of the bill of rights? Would that be ok too?

  136. Thomas Austin says:

    I would have the person that took it and the people that arranged the theft arrested. The proper way to have handled this would have been to get a court order and had Steven Vasko pay for any court cost. According to the rules they seem to have there can be no bird baths or feeders. There can be no little yard gnomes. Just how boring can the yard area be? Are you allowed to have a patio table with chairs? If anything else is out in the lawn area then this is religious persecution. Why would anyone want to live in such a cold and empty place anyway? The people in charge of the homeowners association are just people with nothing better to do and have this to make them feel important.

  137. Sick of holy rollers!!!!!! says:

    TELL GOD to KILL the HOME OWNERS ASSOCIATION !!!!!!

    The POWER of PRAYER!!!!!!

  138. Steve says:

    I am an Orthodox Jewish man, 51 years old. I absolutely love the celebration of Christmas. It means so much to so many people, especially children, and the decorations whether religious or just ornamental, make the country a more beautiful place. It should also never be forgotten that America was b uilt on the Judeo-Christian ethic, and when we lose sight of it, we lose our foundation. No one in this family made people get out of their cars and pay homage to the statue…they were just scelebrfating an important holiday for them with pride. AMerica at its best.

  139. Al says:

    Go buy another statue for $200. and let the tennancy association have the old one.

  140. h8commielibs says:

    ANYONE that allows fools that have NO RESPONSIBILITIES for the payments of the home or property you have purchased and make payments on to dictate what you can and cannot do with your property is a bigger fool than the fools you have signed your rights to. HOA’s are a 25 year (plus/minus) huge mistake. HOA’s build glass castles to conduct the business of extorting money from rightful owners. They serve a self serving purpose to enrich those that do not have ANY responsibility towards the property they overlord, harassing and taking money for something they have NO RIGHTS TO!!! Divest yourselves from any properties that are represented by any form of HOA rules. They are designed to take from you for reasons of enrichment of those in the HOA. People, take responsibility for your self, property, and children.

  141. james says:

    If you are stupid enough to voluntarily live under the opressive rules of these so-called homeowners associations, aka dictators in suits, then you have nothing to whine about, you have freely given up your rights becuase of your own ego.

  142. boB says:

    I would hire someone to steal it back (tit for tat) and then put in front of their door, knock, and walk away.

  143. George Somsel says:

    I think a reasonable settlement would be for the association to forgive the fine on condition that the offender acknowledge that he is not to place any personal objects on common property again. If he wishes to place them on areas which are his personal property, that should be permitted—in opposition to some associations which forbid the flying of a flag on one’s personal property.

  144. Tim says:

    Freedom of religion and I can care less about the rules. Next year payback will be strong. All radicals can hunt for a hideaway as there will be no more protection from your radical leaders that will be voted out. Getting rid of God by way of radicals has brought us here. Decay of the American people is just where we are at. If you want to dance around the golden calf you can do it quietly. The rest of us don’t need your opinion as to the results. We can see that for ourselves.

  145. Not Chicken Little says:

    Their big mistake is in living where an HOA makes the rules – petty authoritarian, Nazi types are attracted to homeowner’s associations where they can exercise control over their neighbors. These are the types of people who in the past enjoyed being guards in POW camps and abusing prisoners.

    I agree they must live within the rules – make them take it down but to fine them excessively – or at all – is just not right and shows what jerks they are.

  146. Norman Noir says:

    How many “Bergs,” “Stines,” and “Blatts” are on the homeowners association board. Of course this is religious descrimination against the one group it is LEGAO to descriminate against–Christians.

  147. fletch says:

    While I disagree with any form of religious persecution, and that the suppression of the freedom of speech and religious worship is un-American, the people that chose to live in a community with a HOA must realize that they have signed a contract with that association.

    Part of what has made this country great is the enforcement of property rights, which extends to contracts such as this. If contracts are allowed to be violated after they are agreed upon because one of the parties decides that they no longer like the agreement, then that throws the premise for our whole system out the door.

    Bottom line, if you are not comfortable with the terms of the contract, don’t sign it. This is why I would never consider living someplace with an HOA.

  148. Philosopher says:

    If you can’t stand the restrictions, get out of the HOA.

    The same rule that says you can’t put a statue of the Virgin Mary outside your condo keeps the weirdos down the cul-de-sac from putting up a truck on blocks outside theirs.

    HOA rules protect the property rights — and values — of all the residents.

  149. Condo-Info says:

    New Water Front Condo in TorontoEau Du Soleil

  150. Condo-Inlfo says:

    New Water Front Condo in Toronto Eau Du Soleil

  151. Robert Sciolino says:

    A non-starter for me. I have no sympathy what-so-ever for anyone living in a communist like condominium. You chose to give up many liberties in your desire to have the condo services performed in your place of residence. You made your bed, you sleep in it. This is why I will never EVER live in a condo or deed restricted “community”. Its enslavement by choice.

  152. Martin says:

    No one EXPECTS the Spanish Inquisition!

  153. Klasikatica says:

    Meh. I live in a Condo myself. We have Association Rules for a reason. If you don’t like the rules then DON’T MOVE THERE. You are provided with a copy of the rules before moving in to most Condos. If not you can ASK for a copy. READ THEM. Then you have no problems. Of course, you should READ THEM before buying to ensure you will not run into any issues. This way later you don’t whine like a little b**** when you break the rules and the Association has to enforce them.

    Don’t like the rules… don’t buy or move there! It’s that simple. It’s not religious persecution. You just don’t know how or refuse to live by the rules you agreed to live by when you moved in.

  154. jbspry says:

    if you leave something on my property and I remove it, how is that confiscation?

  155. GF says:

    Sue the HOA members individually make them pay personnaly, make their lifes misserable. Its easily done, inmates do it inside prisions all the time. This is a “clear Civil Rights violation”. And if its not, who cares…

  156. mk says:

    why on earth would anyone want to live where there is a homeowner’s association. This gives people total control over you and everything you do.

  157. Mark Stoddard says:

    As “The Patriot” said in the mouth of Mel Gibson, “I’m not sure which is worse, one tyrant 3,000 miles away or 3,000 tyrants one mile away.”

    This is a ridiculous argument. The two sides need to sit down, talk and resolve. Such animosity makes everyone look foolish, and those with the club always look worse. Try some compassion and compromise.

  158. Joe says:

    It is a lovely thing for this family to honor the Blessed Virgin by placing a statue near their home, seeking Her protection and blessing on them and on all who pass by. They are not worshipping an icon, because having a statue is similar to placing a photograph of a loved one on a mantelpiece. In this way, one is reminded of that loved one and displays the love one has for him or her.

    Surely the statue should not be held for ransom. Surely they have the right to the few inches outside of their building. This statue is doing harm to no one and only the basest of human beings would object to this statue — or to one of the Buddha, for that matter. I commend this family for their devotion to the Blessed Virgin and I urge the home owners’ association to return the statue and to void any fine heretofore levied because of this matter. In any event, this family will realize the continued blessings of Mary and of Her Son for their constancy in the face of persecution.

    1. yarply says:

      Sorry Joe. Maybe you should read the Ten Commandments before you cast judgement on the baseness of an individual. Through your statement you have placed judgement on God for he say’s “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
      You call God Baseless. I ask that he forgives you your slander and Blasphemy.

  159. THE ARBITER says:

    “I made a promise to the Blessed Mother and I’m keeping it,” Vasko said. “And this is about her. This isn’t about me.”

    And that my dear UNINFORMED “Christian” is called IDOLATRY and is frowned upon SEVERELY by the Lord our God whom you claim to worship. In fact not only is PRAYING to the Virgin Mary not permissible in REAL CHRISTIANITY, it is something for which God will punish not only YOU but also your CHILDREN.
    EXODUS 20:
    4. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.

    5. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

    But don’t let the FACTS about your religion spoil your FAKE WORSHIP of God, Okay? Perhaps this bloke should actually READ his bible instead of listening to the FALSE DOCTRINE SPECIALISTS in the CATHOLIC CHURCH, who force their congregants to commit BLASPHEMY every time they call a priest “FATHER”! Hint: See Matthew 23:9 Maybe you’ll listen to the words Jesus ACTUALLY said, although I doubt it.

    1. yarply says:

      Your right. No where in the bible is Mary worship found. Jesus said worship God only. That God alone is good. In fact Mary, like the rest of the dead are awaiting the resurrection. God said all die and then the Judgement. Worshiping mary is calling God a Liar.

    2. djohnmissouri says:

      As a catholic, It is my duty to attempt to help you, Arbiter. Catholics do not worship Mary, they pray to Mary and other saints. The word, Pray, in the catholic church has different meanings. It can also mean to communicate. Many catholics communicate and ask the saints to pray to God on their behalf. . Also, not all images are graven. God had many images in Solemans Temple and on the arc of the covenant. If you really seek the truth, go to
      catholic.com and search all their free articles which better resolve your issues with the Church.

  160. howard roark says:

    If he bought the condo and those were the rules, then he needs to abide by them. Sounds tough, but he bought into the association. Now, if the rules changed AFTER he bought in then that could be a different story, but I’d suppose that the rules somewhere say that the buyer is committed to abide by future rules.

    HE OUGHT TO RUN FOR CONDO BOARD, however. Sounds like the condo board needs a gadfly.

    For myself, you couldn’t GIVE me a condo — well, I suppose you could give me one, but I wouldn’t even go inside — I’d put it up for sale for 20K less than market (remember, you GAVE it to me) and I’d sell it.

  161. yarply says:

    I thought the government made laws. I did not know The homeowners association had the legal authority to make and enforce laws and levy fines. Well I guess if the people ever rise up, the homeowners association heads will be first on someones list seeing they think they are part of some government. Bureaucrats.

  162. Tom Wuerstlin says:

    I agree. While no one wants to have his or her rights denied, no Evangelical wants to have a false god put up in the neighborhood. Catholics are not Christians!

  163. Kent says:

    This gestapo-type behavior is becoming more common in America, mostly coming from the out-of-control government. In a more civil time, the correct thing to do would have been to politely ask the homeowner to move it – not just take it and demand a fine be paid. This is not North Korea but it feels more like it every day – and I’m not even religious.

  164. paige says:

    I am Catholic and live in a condo. He placed the statue on common ground. Rules say he can’t do that. So he should have removed it.

  165. sick of the B.S.! says:

    Wonder what they’d do if some MUSLIM FAMILY put in a FOOT BATH and a call to prayer bell in their FRONT YARD?????????
    This is what is going on in this country….We are suppose to be Understanding and accepting of the PPL who’s heritage were of many of those who were responsible for 911..and before we know it..It’s gonna look like the Middle East over here…
    Enough already…if were suppose to be accepting and understanding and Politically correct..IT has to be a Group effort..

  166. djohnmissouri says:

    As an ardent catholic, my heart always opens when I see a loving statue of Mary, mother of Jesus. But, this is not about that. When a condominium is purchased, the buyers sign papers stating they will observe the condominium rules and regulations. If one can not live by those rules in good faith, they should buy else where. Along as the association was following the rules, I have to side with them. In my viewpoint, many have it backwards in their opinions.

  167. obsidianram says:

    Had it been a set of golf club or a bird bath he had sitting outside, the HoA wouldn’t have batted an eyelash; yet because it was a Christian symbol, they felt compelled to make it an issue. Why? Because the moral and ethical principles taught by Christianity apparently make them (and whomever made complaints to spur the HoA into action) squirm with uneasiness. Rather telling in and of itself. Common area or not, it’s definitely a case of religious persecution unless the HoA can prove otherwise, which is highly unlikely.

  168. Jullou says:

    It’s interesting that Christmas has to be watered down into a secular holiday but the symbols of other religions is okay. At Christmastime, people should be able to have their Christian symbols out. Simple as that. The first thing that has to go when turning a country Marxist/Communist, is the Christian religion. Why, because Marxists/Communits cannot compete with God, and fear that the Holy Spirt will have more power than they will.
    JIMS

  169. Publius 2012 says:

    Homeowner’s association? How about band of thieves? Taking something not belonging to you is pure and simple stealing, those who steal are thieves. Give a few people some authority and they quickly lose common sense and become like jack booted thugs. Just give the property back and let the family alone.

  170. Himie says:

    All this proves is that Marty Griffin is an idiot

  171. just me says:

    Why is this even a story? The HOA presented the rules prior to purchase of the condo and this person broke the rules with a 150 lb cement statue. They had every right to keep the common area in the manner stated in the contract. How sad that we have to blow this all out of proportion and deem it an attack on Christians. Get over it.

  172. thebeers says:

    Why anyone would buy and live in an HOA is beyond me. You have no protected rights. It is a great cash cow for lawyers, though!

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