Ethics Quiz: The Uncivil Gravestone

Having begun today with a convoluted ethics quiz, I feel I owe you a straightforward one. The topic: gravestone etiquette!

The family of “Owens”—didn’t he have a first name?—coded his favorite retort “Fuck off” onto his gravestone. “It was a term he used a lot,” his daughter told a local radio station. “He was very direct: if he didn’t like you, he wouldn’t talk to you.” Wow, what a great guy! I don’t know how long it took for someone outside of the family to discover the clever <cough!> arrangement of initial letters that spelled out his cheery slogan, but the cemetery management says that it was always was against the placement of the vulgar marker. “There is no place for swearing in the place where people’s loved ones lie,” a spokesperson said. “Imagine lying next to this tombstone forever.”

Yeah, I’m lying dead in a coffin forever, but what really bothers me is “fuck off” being engraved on the headstone next door. What is this, stupid statement week? While we’re tallying up stupid, why are the letters crucial to the story blurred on that photo? If the story is about the use of “fuck,” why censor the same word in the photo?

Your SECOND Ethics Alarms Ethics Quiz of the Day is…

Is the “Fuck off” gravestone unethical?

Andrea Dick And The “Fuck Biden” Ethics Train Wreck


I was just thinking of neighbors like Andrea Dick yesterday, after I walked my politically tolerant dog Spuds past the many obnoxious lawn signs that have proliferated in my little corner of Alexandria, Virginia. There is, of course, the large, hand painted wooden sign reading “Black Lives Matter” that is festooned with rainbow flags and a full size suit of armor for some reason. That’s been an eyesore for more than a year. Then there are the moronic “End Racism” virtue-signaling signs—“End Stupidity” would be equally effective—and that list of facile progressive nostrums, including “No human is illegal.” You know, this one:


Well aren’t you wonderful! There is also that oldie but goodie, “Dissent is Patriotic,” whatever that means. There are several versions of this one…

Our America

All of them are the equivalent of the homeowner standing on his or her front lawn and preaching through a megaphone, and in the cases of the homes that post signs like this one…

Welcome sign

…the implication is that all the other houses nearby are full of greedy, racist bigots. All the signs offend me. The entire practice of using one’s property to preach, proselytize or politic is offensive. Yes, it’s protected speech, and using speech like that is abusing the right.

Andrea Dick is an angry supporter of former President Donald J. Trump and detests President Biden, so she has banners and signs expressing these view on her New Jersey house and lawn, including “Don’t Blame Me/I Voted for Trump” and several banners and signs with the message in the graphic under the post’s title. These are also ugly and offensive, but no more so than the virtue-signaling blather I have to see every day.

But her neighbors complained, so local officials first asked her to take down several of the banners that they said violated an anti-obscenity ordinance. She refused, and now she is resisting a judge’s order that she do so or face $250 fines every day the “Fuck Biden” banners and signs remain. Andrea Dick is pledging to fight it in court on free speech grounds.

“It’s my First Amendment right,” she said in an interview on Monday, “and I’m going to stick with that.”

Ethics Verdicts:

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