Everyone has a message they want to get out to the world. There are many ways to get that message out – radio, television, internet …. and in print. In print one can choose a newspaper add or maybe publish a book. But perhaps the least expensive and easiest way to get a message out there, and spread it far and wide, is the simple bumper sticker.
While ads and signs can be ignored, a bumper sticker is an almost guaranteed way to ensure the message will be read. While driving a car, how many people don’t read the bumper stickers of the cars in front of them? Some people put a lot of thought into their bumper stickers, as it is not just an ad, but a declaration to the world concerning something in which they believe.
On many stickers you will find a whitty phrase or representation – a slogan, perhaps. “Slogan” comes from the Gaelic term “sluagh-ghairm”, which means “battle cry”. In today’s world, most of the major battles in which slogans play a major part are in politics. Who doesn’t remember, “Hope and Change” or “Yes we can!” from the 2008 Democratic campaign? What about Ronald Reagan’s inspiring speech, “It’s morning in America”? Or the ill-fated “Read my lips … no new taxes,” of George Bush in 1988? Some slogans have been credited with making a major contribution to a campaign, such as “I like Ike”, or, “Tippecanoe and Tyler Too” (from the Harrison/Tyler campaign in 1840)?
Political bumper stickers usually capitalize on these short slogans to make a point, or sometimes are more humorous. “Wake me up in 1996 (and please tell me everything is okay!)” proclaimed one bumper sticker after the 1992 William Clinton win, and “Don’t blame me! I didn’t vote for him!” was seen regularly during the George W. Bush years. Sometimes, however, one may have an idea of his own for political stickers, and can’t find anything else that quite makes the point.
Usher in the ever-changing world of technology! Enterprising people have seen this need and now a person can have their own custom campaign stickers. Sites such as “thebumpersticker.com” have seen to that. There are people to help one design his sticker. They can even be cut into a specific shape. There is great emphasis now placed upon individuality – being different from the crowd, and standing out. Why should that not extend to one’s political stickers as well?
There are thousands of bumper stickers that merely have the candidates names or a logo on them, but that’s just not enough for the individual, creative mind. Political stickers don’t just have to be about candidates either. Sometimes issues come to the forefront in the political arena. Be it the rights of certain segments of society, abortion, the economy, Medicare, taxes … all these ideas find their way onto political stickers.
Everyone wants to make a statement – and now, they can.