Our opinion: When stupid is expensive

As the cost of cleanup atYoungsville High School and replacement of certain ruined equipment continues to mount – now approaching $1 million – it has become a dramatic testimonial to the senselessness, the tragedy of vandalism.

Yes, the Warren County School District carries insurance for this sort of thing, but in the end someone pays. For the school district and its taxpayers, it will likely mean higher premiums for that insurance, along with any deductible specified in the policy.

For the perpetrators, some criminal punishment if they are convicted, along with a permanent stain on their records. As for restitution, if the cost rises to the seven-figure level, could it ever be fully paid?

For the rest of us, there remains the nagging question of why? Why would someone or some group of people enter a public building and do their best, short of arson, to destroy it? There seemed to be no anger involved, no point made, not that a statement of purpose would in anyway justify such behavior. The only apparent statement, other than the fixation of the perpetrators on certain elements of the human anatomy, was the not-so-subtle announcement, “We’re just this stupid.”

But, senseless, pointless, wanton destruction is pretty much the definition of vandalism, whether it is obscene graffiti spray painted on the side of a building or keys scraped along the side of a car.

The difference in this case is scale, the sheer volume of damage, which only compounds our disbelief and astonishment.