Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Bumper Stumper

So a week ago I'm in traffic, poking along. And I notice that the car in front of me is basically held together with about 40 bumper stickers. The hatchback, the glass, the bumper... covered. And every sticker was liberal. There was a "re-elect Gore." "Impeach Bush." "Wage Peace." "Save the Earth." "Love your mother (Gaia)." "This progressive VOTES!" And of course, the ubiquitous 1960s peace symbol, maybe with a dove. And it dawned on me--the corresponding conservative car doesn't exist. Now, there may be a single sticker, maybe even two. Maybe a "W: The President" or a leftover "Bush-Cheney '04." There may even be a "suppport the troops." And I'll grant you that pretty much any Dale Earnhardt #3 sticker should count as a red-state symbol (or Calvin peeing on a chevy logo). But I wonder, why don't conservatives engage in the bumper sticker arms race? A friend suggests that maybe it's because they don't want to get sticky stuff all over the Mercedes. Maybe it's because the "silent majority" really prefers silence. Who knows?

11 comments:

Philip Murphy said...

I think your friend's suggestion is pretty close.

Here's my take... Conservatives don't plaster their cars because they know, at some time, they're going to sell that beat up hunk of exploding metal... and although they ordinarily would feel guilty selling such a peice of junk to a fellow Earnhardt fan, they have no problem selling it to a flaming lib.

Truthfully, bumper stickers reduce the value of the car and most conservatives are fiscally conservative... go figure.

DK said...

I think there is also an aspect of leftist ideology at work here as well. I once asked an individual I know with a ton of bumper stickers what motivated her to do that to her car. "Self expression" was the reply as though it should have been obvious.

One of the sacraments of the left is self expression at all costs. Conservative self expression is much more subtle. One might even say it's conservative even (pun intended).

Lori Fitzgerald said...

I have never owned a new car in my life, and certainly nothing that I would be concerned about decreasing the resale value of (since we drive 'em til they die), but I have never understood the fascination with plastering bumper stickers all over one's car. I can't reconcile it in my brain. I prefer the new-fangled bumper magnets. That way, when I change my mind, I can just take off the magnet and no one has to know I have stupid ideas.

Coach Sal said...

Well, immediately after posting this, I was made a liar. Yesterday in carpool duty, there was a van with a dozen "It's your planet, too, bonehead!" stickers (magnets, I think) and a RUDY! bumper sticker. Whether or not support for Rudy does or does not equal conservatism is a different post for a different day!

MichaelPolutta said...

The other contingent I see with a lot of stickers is Wiccan followers, at least here in Atlanta.

I have always wondered if bumper-stickerites believe that it gives them more credibility if they're willing to "take a public stand" on things. Otherwise, like others, I cannot rationalize it. ("Rational" may not be a good concept to try to tie to this topic...)

Goode Design said...

i was wondering if i was the only one who noticed that. If i see a car from a distance that is bumperstickered to death, i just look at beks and say: look hon, another liberal democrat. At first she wondered how i knew... but it's just an imperitive... if you have a hatchback, you must preach from your peal-n-stick pulpit.

Now, for us Mac peeps.. it's almost a requirement that we represent our iPod laden hearts with the apple on the back. I've considered having a vinyl company put the logo of every company which i own a stake in on my truck... still considering it.

I've actually gotten fed up w/ the Xtian bumbpersticker sermons. For us ADHD people, it's dangerous for you to have bumperstickers on your car... we actually want to read them and aren't satisfied until we actually do... and no matter what the peril.

As for what Lori said, same here... never owned a new car... never will.

Goode Design said...

ps: why is it that ACTIVists tend to talk more than they do... ACTIVE = DO... Talk is cheap, silence is golden. It's better without their 2 cents.

I guess that's one reason to actually respect Bono.

Coach Sal said...

I agree. If your bumper sticker has too much stuff on it to be in a great, big font where my nearsighted eyes can read it, then you deserve to be run into.

I do have one sticker on the Sal-mobile--it's a Christian fish with the tag line, "Further Up and Further In." Bonus brownie points to the first reader who can nail where the quote comes from.

bekster said...

"The Last Battle" by C.S. Lewis. What's my prize?

Coach Sal said...

You win dinner with me on Sunday at Granny's house. Hopefully Roast Beast and chocolate cake. As a bonus, I'll throw in the reader's digest version of my Watergate lecture.

bekster said...

Cool! Hey, wait... I get that stuff anyway...

Roast and cake do sound good, though. Yay for Ann's birthday. :)