— Elizabeth Crisp (@elizabethcrisp) December 11, 2013
DENHAM SPRINGS, La. (CBS Houston) – A carefully arranged string of Christmas lights that garnered national media attention for its purposeful resemblance to a hand giving the middle finger – which ultimately led to a battle in the courts over Constitutional rights – is once again on display.
Sarah Childs, the woman behind the display, said she was inspired to construct it due to frequent harassment from a neighbor after she accused the woman, Kayla Weldon, of stealing her dog, WWL.com is reporting.
“You know lots of people just resort to violence,” Childs was quoted as saying. “Look at road rage, people flip each other off all the time. I really don’t see what the big deal is.”
Weldon denies the theft accusations, as well as statements that implicated her as the person who cut down the first lights display last year.
“She can accuse me of getting up there and cutting her lights down all she wants but that’s definitely not the case. I didn’t climb my ass on no roof and cut her lights down,” Weldon told the station. “There are plenty of other people in the neighborhood who can’t stand it.”
Following the disagreement caused by last year’s display, local authorities initially ordered Childs to take it down. However, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the city for interfering with her First Amendment rights to construct the holiday display of her choosing.
The city ultimately dropped the matter, and a new display of the same construct was allowed to remain undisturbed. This year, Childs has decided to bring the lights back.
“I’m not doing this for publicity,” she said of her actions. “What other way do I have to express my angst? People have feelings and emotions. And she’s still slandering me all over Facebook.”
Weldon, however, feels it is a publicity stunt, and added to WWL.com that Childs no longer resides in the home bearing the lights.
“And she’s putting another finger on the roof? Are you serious? She’s only coming over here to antagonize me and bring up old s***,” says Weldon. “She just wants attention. That’s all this is about.”