Community closes gates to keep out post-election unrest

8:50 PM, Nov 6, 2012   |    comments
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Woodstock, Ga. -- A Woodstock retirement community is closing their front gates to protect themselves against any possible post-election unrest. 

The decision was announced by HOA president Bill Stanley in a Sunday email to residents of the Cottages at Woodstock. It has attracted national media attention, most notably on a New York Times political blog.

Stanley's email read, "In light of the contentious nature of the upcoming election, and some of the rhetoric indicating possible civil unrest, I have decided to close the community gates 24/7."

He said he would close the gates when the polls close Tuesday evening, but when 11Alive went to the complex on Tuesday morning, the gates were already closed. Many of the residents thought the email could be a joke.

"It's funny but it's also embarrassing," said Cottages resident Kay Kijewski. She said friends and family as far as Michigan had heard the story.  "There are a few funny things on the post's online comments calling us wing nuts, the funniest one was where they said 'I hope they have enough Depends [adult diapers] to last them."

Kijewski is a New York native, and she said many of the residents were also transplants who didn't exactly see eye to eye with their neighbors on political issues.

"I think most people are not worried about it, I can't imagine anyone being worried about it," said Massachusetts native Judy Lebow. "I love this great state of Georgia," her husband said laughing.

The HOA president would not return phone calls from 11Alive. Several other residents either drove past a reporter or waved him off.

"It's amazing what levels the national media will go to," said one as she drove through the gate.

The email said the gates will reopen during the day if all goes well in the country after the election.

"I feel it is better to take a position of caution to enhance controlled access to the community until we see what (if any) negative repercussions may occur because of the results of the election," Stanley wrote.

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