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A side trip down candidate lane

POSTED: July 11, 2012 12:14 p.m.

I know this is supposed to be a sports blog. It IS a sports blog, by golly.

It's just that writing about sports all the time makes for a dull mind. Or makes my mind duller than it usually is. Or something.

Never mind.

Today's not sports topic: Candidate signs. We're in the middle of politics season and you can't turn around without seeing 14 candidates trying to get you to vote for them.

Some even want you to vote for them when they don't represent your district, since there have been times when I've found candidate signs on my property for candidates a district over. But I digress.

Does anyone really vote for anyone just because he or she puts out signs? Or because the color of the sign means 'red state' or 'blue state' or there's something in there that says Republican or Democrat or Tea Partier or Coffee Partier or even my own party, the Free Jeff Whitten From Politicians party.

Now, I get the idea that private citizens put candidate signs in their yards to show that they support that candidate. And I suppose in the popularity contest that is politics that politicians could feel good if they had more yard signs than their opponent(s), or, on the other hand, get the idea that they're behind in the yard sign count.

What I don't get is what you see on right of ways where opposing candidates park their signs right next to one another. Does that happen by mutual agreement -- "I'm putting my sign over on Highway 144 by the giant woodpecker, how bout you?" "I think that's a great spot for our signs to sit next to one another. Meet you in 10 minutes."

What I think happens is one candidate stakes out turf: "Hey, my name will look good right there" and plops down a sign, then it's spotted by someone pulling for a different candidate who decides that fire needs to be answered with fire and he responds with a sign, and before you know it you've got 15 campaign signs where once was merely weeds and empty fast food wrappers.

I think candidates should have to go through a trial by ordeal before they can take office. Wouldn't you be more inclined to respect someone who did something remarkable to get into office, like wrestle alligators while their hair was on fire or run a 200 mile marathon wearing flipflops and sunscreen? And I agree with those who say that candidates shouldn't be allowed to put that little R or D behind their name. Might force voters to do a little homework and look more at issues than parties. Or campaign signs.


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