Santa Ysabel woman erects middle finger statute, points it at her tribal council

June Sortore refuses to take down statue

SAN DIEGO - A Santa Ysabel resident has put up a 10-foot statue of a middle finger in her front yard.

The statue is as tall as a basketball hoop and stands freely in front of June Sortore's home.

It might be the tallest middle finger on the planet. Sortore is flipping a big bird at the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel Tribal Council.

Sortore did not return any calls from 10News, but she told East County Magazine the statue is pointed at her tribal council because she said the council was "repressive."

Santa Ysabel closed its casino last month because they could not pay the bills. 10News reporter Joe Little spoke to a few people off camera who said the tribe has fallen on tough times with a lot of people out of work.

Tribal Chairman Virgil Perez sent Sortore a letter on March 4. The letter called the statue an obscene gesture that schoolchildren can see as they come by on the bus. Sortore was also asked to take it down.

However, Sortore refused by arguing it was free speech and artwork.

10News could not get comment from the tribal council because the tribal offices were closed Friday.

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