Swastikas In Chicago Suburb Mayoral Campaign Headquarters; Former Valparaiso, Indiana, Mayor Jon Costas Running Again, From Swastika-Featuring Older Building in Historic Town Center

In an extended suburb in the outer Chicago region, a major party mayoral campaign headquarters features swastikas in the property's interior design.

The swastikas appear in the floor tiling at 23 Lincolnway, Valparaiso, IN 46383, within Valparaiso, Indiana's quaint, historic town center, across from its courthouse square.

Regardless of the particular swastikas' age or actual meaning, their unremediate presence seems especially insensitive for a political campaign office. Given past traumas concerning Nazi activities in Chicagoland, including Supreme Court litigation over Nazi plans to march in Skokie, another Chicago suburb, as well as current global reports of factional hatred featuring swastikas, admidst violent turmoil in the Holy Land, one might have expected more.

Within about 10 miles of a national lakeshore on Lake Michigan, semi-upscale Valparaiso also serves as a bedroom community for a growing number of Chicago-connected executives and professionals.

The Jon Costas mayoral campaign headquarters is about an hour's drive from the Chicago Board of Trade in the heart of downtown Chicago, and within about 15 minutes of the I-90 freeway into Chicago.

By curious coincidence, the building flies the flag of Luxembourg, a tiny but influential Germanic country of less than 700,000 people that still borders Germany.

Republican Jon Costas served as mayor of Valparaiso, Indiana, a city of about 35,000, from 2003 to 2019, and is now running again, with the general election scheduled for Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2023. Costas' wikipedia page bills him as a singer, musician, and elder law attorney, in addition to being a politician.

This is how the swastikas looked when the room was mostly empty, except for a large table, a bear statue in the corner window and a seasonal Christmas tree:

Swastika Flooring

Swastika Flooring Christmas

Swastika Flooring and Bear

While the swastikas extended mostly from wall-to-wall across the flooring of one large room, it appears that the campaign has now covered a portion of the floor with a thin floor covering, bounded by room partitions.

Beyond the partitions, however, the swastikas are still visible. And, on occasion, it has been observed that the campaign has opened up a passageway at the center of the portions, providing a clear view of bare swastika flooring beyond.

The same room, turned into a Costas Republican mayoral campaign office:

Costas Campaign Office

Costas Campaign Office

Costas Campaign Office

At at other times, as seen above, even with the partitions shutting off the front portion. Yet, even then, the swastikas still are visible "peeking out" from the open space beneath the partitions.

Now, as is widely known, Adolf Hitler's Nazi Party did not invent the swastika.

The swastika, or variants, date back to antiquity, in cultures or religious traditions from Eurasia as well as, apparently, some Native American cultures, with meanings relating to themes such as prosperity or good fortune.

Hitler's original Nazi Party existed from around 1920 to 1945, and essentially hijacked the a version of the swastika for use as a Nazi symbol, perhaps tied in with Nazi mythology wanted to hearken to Aryan origins in Eurasia.

The overall building at 23 Lincolnway in Valparaiso apparently dates back to the 1890s, albeit with what appear to be some more modern features or enhancements.

Here are photos of the building, including the flag of Luxembourg flying next to a U.S. flag and Indiana flag:

Valparaiso Building Containg Jon Costas Mayoral Campaign Office with Swastikas

Flags of Luxembour, United States, Indiana Atop Valparaiso Building Housing Jon Costas Mayoral Campaign Office

The swastikas in the flooring appear to have their ends pointing leftward, rather than to the right, like a Nazi swastika would.

Other uses of swastikas by various cultural or religious traditions appear to vary with regard to whether their added endpoints lead towads the left or right.

In addition, the Valparaiso swastikas in the Costas campaign office appear to essentially be positioned as flat, or parallel to the walls, while Hitler Nazi swastikas were rotated to a 45-degree angle.

The Valparaiso swastikas in the Costas campaign office also are green, rather than, for example, black or red.

Both the flooring and the ceiling in the room being used by the Costas campaign appear to be somewhat old and historic. Especially if they predate 1920, that fact would presumably add to the notion that the Valparaiso swastikas in the room related to other, more historic swastika origins.

Neverthless, even if the swastikas turned out to not be Nazi-related, or turned out to predate the German Nazi party by decades, or to relate to other less sinister traditions, there still is the concern about any swastika-related decor being insensitive.

That kind of "tone-deaf" insensitivity especially would be the case for a political campaign.

There is also the question of the implied laziness and lack of professional atunement evidencred by such a colossal blunder, and what it says about whether this small city in Indiana is ever going to be "ready for the big time."

Meanwhile, by bizarre coincidence, Costas was previously mayor during Valparaiso's infamous scandal involving the public water utility setting off powerful force into public water pipes that reputedly caused the forceful spewing of sewage, out of multiple drain openings, into a private home on Valparaiso's Randle Street, north of the historic town center.

The environmental disaster left a large family, with roughly a dozen children, temporarily homeless, some of them rendered ill by the catastrophic event and its aftermath.

Whatever initial damage and environmental health hazards occurred reportedly were aggragavated and compounded, including by extensive resulting mold infestations.

The home reportedly was rendered uninhabitable until major efforts were taken to remedy the damage years later, following legal action.

After a lawsuit against the city, and social media campaigns, negotations finally resulted in the city's utilities board making payments years later for the home's remediation, with the majority of the payments reportedly covered by insurance.

Following remediation, the home eventually, reportedly, was once again given a certificate of habilitability for humans.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the mother of the family involved was prevented by the terms of the settlement from commenting further at later points.

The Chicago Tribune reported that, during the social media campaign over the scandal, it was then-Mayor Jon Costas whom persons were prompted to e-mail in a video about their plight and suffering created by one of the family's children.

The house in question is within about one mile of the campaign headquarters featuring the swastikas.

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Swastika Flooring In Valparaiso, Indiana, Room