Political Sign Wars Have Begun

With election season now in full swing, it is once again time for what I call the “Sign Wars.” This is one of those thing in politics that seems silly, because who ever has been convinced by a sign?

As hard as it is for people who are even slightly civilly engaged to understand, it offers a lot of credit to the kinds of voters who will be deciding a close election such as this one. It is a soft form of psychological warfare, “All of my neighbors like this Romney guy, but I think Obama is a good husband, and a good man. I mean sure, he’s not been the best President, but maybe if my neighbors all like Romney then I should take another look at Romney.” If you can accomplish it, greatly outnumbering the opposition in the sign wars can demoralize partisans for opposing candidates. At least that’s the idea.

So now that October is upon us, the sign wars are starting. The places I have visited in Bucks County seem to be blooming in yard signs much later this year than previous years. I’ve seen precious little. Chester County is starting to bloom. A brief drive through neighborhoods on the way to work, so far Romney-Ryan is outnumbering Obama by 10-to-1. These are comfortably wealthy to upper-middle-class neighborhoods in a county that is traditionally Republican, and went red in 2000 and 2004, but went blue in 2008 for Obama. I’d be curious to drive through the super wealthy parts of the ring counties and see how the sign wars are going there.

For gun owners, signs for candidates are a great way to expand the reach you have beyond direct family members, close friends, and other gun owners you might talk to at your club or range. They don’t specify a topic. It doesn’t matter that your neighbor is most motivated to vote on education issues while the issue that drives you to activism is support for the Second Amendment or hunting. The sign might encourage them to find out more about their key topics for the race and back your favored candidates.

For lower ballot races, signs can make a bigger impression. Many state representative candidates can’t afford widespread expensive tv advertising like the presidential candidates can, so they rely more heavily on this form of grassroots advertising. If you need help finding signs for NRA-endorsed candidates, send us a message via Facebook or Twitter and we’ll help you out.

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