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Sundries
...a sweatshop of moxie

Monday, January 23, 2006

Two Very Different Points Of View

A while back, I shot these two photos of bumperstickers, so that you could get a peak into what people around South Florida, were saying.

Bumper stickers reached their peak in the 1970's in the US.

Consider their popularity:

Bumperstickers are mass-produced, but which ones you put on your car, are individual to each person.

There are many bumperstickers, but that's because there are many cars in the US, much more than any other nation on earth.

So as you can see, each of these factors go into making bumperstickers the quintessential American medium of personal expression, combining the spoken, and unspoken elements of American society.

I consider them a gauge of public opinion, at their rawest.

Forget polls, which if any one of them has a greater than +- 2% margin of error, they are faulty by definition.

Bumperstickers is where American opinions are at!

Below are two examples.

I like them because, as can be plainly seen, neither car is that of a rich person (in fact, the first car is so grubby, that the retouch took a while) -- so they take out the McChimpy Halliburton or Champagne Socialist factor entirely.

These are just two people, hard-working folk, who have two very different points of view.

And bully for them!

FIRST BUMPERSTICKER




State: Older Florida tags
Location: Carpark, Coral Gables campus, University of Miami
Bumperstickers: 3
Messages Conveyed:

"This Soldier is Anti-Bush"
"Worst President EVER!"
(Non-verbal patriotic rendition of Rocky Mountains and US Flag side-by-side)


SECOND BUMPERSTICKER





State: Newer Florida tags
Location: Carpark, Ermita de La Caridad, Coconut Grove
Bumperstickers: 5
Messages Conveyed:

"Paz Radio 830 AM WACC" (x2)
"Bush/Cheney '04"
"La Voz Catolica" (trans. The Catholic Voice)
"Jesus is the Reason For the Season" (sports message)


To me, they are indicative of the culture each of them belongs to:

The first, part of that much vaunted liberal atmosphere of college campuses the world over, is that of an ex-soldier, who may be attending the pricey private University, via the GI Bill.

He or she, however, has personalised their viewpoints by narrowing the focus of their ire to one person -- the current US president.

The second, on the other hand, is at the shrine of Our Lady of Charity, the national symbol of Cuba, in a gorgeous little church at the very edge of the beautiful Bay of Biscayne.

Their political message is almost secondary to the greater message of their Catholic faith, although it is no less personalised by stating who they would vote for and support in 2004.

You might think that I took a long time to find these perfectly antithetical bumperstickers, but actually, they were the only ones I found that day.

They are almost too good to be true. But that's just it -- they're not.

Like all honest opinions, they're very real.

10 Comments:

  • You still see some political ones around but mostly you see "My little brat made the honor roll at so and so school!"

    By Blogger Jose Aguirre, at Tue Jan 24, 09:09:00 am GMT-5  

  • I saw a buper sticker last year on a brand spanking new Mercedes that read:

    Have you seen my constitutional rights?

    By Blogger Val Prieto, at Tue Jan 24, 09:51:00 am GMT-5  

  • I can't remember where I read that anything more than 3 bumper stickers was an admission ticket into crazy land.

    A few blocks from me is a Unitarian Church and you get some doozies when they have a function. (The usual suspects, all the faded sloganeering of the sixties slapped onto the abused backside of some poor innocent minivan)

    Never understood the appeal of the silly things myself.

    Though was tempted to ride around with a Bush/Cheney04 sticker this election cycle, if only cause it would be like a permanently extended middle finger to all the 'concerned' liberals that infect my comfy coastal environs.

    By Blogger XWL, at Tue Jan 24, 10:10:00 am GMT-5  

  • I've never had a bumper sticker on any of my vehicles, save for the time I was touring a cavern and came back to find it was an apparent policy to sticker anything in sight with an advertisement for the hole in the ground. Not nice.
    I've come close to advertising my love for the Steelers but always stop when I think how detracting from the vehicle it is, not to mention it might be hard to remove.

    I've nothing against them, sticker the crap out of the cars and make a traveling billboard for someones amusement or rage. I get a kick out of reading what someone thinks, advocates, feels or where to call for a good time. I love America.

    By Blogger Paul, at Tue Jan 24, 04:08:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I love bumper stickers, too. I find it interesting to compare the sentiment to the vehicle. And I love reading the things people will plaster on their cars but would probably hesitate to say in person.

    For those who'd like to advertise but dread scraping off old stickers, you can buy a magnetic backer - place your sitkcer on the magnet, not on your car.

    By Blogger Pastor_Jeff, at Tue Jan 24, 06:49:00 pm GMT-5  

  • You still see some political ones around but mostly you see "My little brat made the honor roll at so and so school!"

    Hey! I like those!

    They are a proud parent trumpeting their kid's progress in school.

    Mind you, the bumpersticker I like better is:

    "My kid can beat your Honor Roll kid upside the head"

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Jan 25, 04:13:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I saw a buper sticker last year on a brand spanking new Mercedes that read:

    Have you seen my constitutional rights?


    Ya tu sabes...

    I once saw one, near the 2004 election, that said:

    "Enough of Bush*t"

    I hope those neo-nazi fascists hijodeputas gave them a ticket. ;)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Jan 25, 04:15:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I can't remember where I read that anything more than 3 bumper stickers was an admission ticket into crazy land.

    Hah! I agree, like writing more than 5 exclamation points at the end of a sentence!!!!!!!!!

    A few blocks from me is a Unitarian Church and you get some doozies when they have a function. (The usual suspects, all the faded sloganeering of the sixties slapped onto the abused backside of some poor innocent minivan)

    Please don't talk to me of Unitarian Church...the pain, the pain.

    One time, I gave to a professor of pediatrics a ride to a Unitarian Church here -- where he was meeting his wife for services (on a Thursday).

    As I pulled into the area's carpark, I saw two women kissing each other, and holding it longer than just a peck, to which he said,

    "Hey! That's our minister and her wife".

    I burnt rubber.

    Never understood the appeal of the silly things myself.

    Maybe if I had lived in the 70s, I might've had one.

    I mean, I did, but I wasn't driving at the age of 3. ;)

    Though was tempted to ride around with a Bush/Cheney04 sticker this election cycle, if only cause it would be like a permanently extended middle finger to all the 'concerned' liberals that infect my comfy coastal environs.

    You mean the same people who wouldn't deign to enter EAST LA, unless to pick up their maid or gardener Javier?

    Yeah, I know a bunch of those here.

    P.S.: I had a Bush/Cheney, but I taped it to the back of my car, and I took it off when I was Clerk of a poll station.

    Good thing too, since when I was reading a soccer forum's political section, they had a photo of a pollworker, loading ballot boxes to take to her drop-off, with Bush/Cheney on her SUV, with the caption:

    You're telling me this election wasn't rigged??

    Yeah, because God knows, only conservatives rig elections, right Mr. Daley?

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Jan 25, 04:22:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I love America.

    Remember the "Love It or Leave It" bumperstickers of the 80's?

    I should eBay, maybe. :)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Jan 25, 04:24:00 pm GMT-5  

  • I love bumper stickers, too. I find it interesting to compare the sentiment to the vehicle.

    That's precisely what I love about bumperstickers.

    The lamest one is:

    I'd rather be...(skiing, biking, boating)

    Etc.

    Well, duh, so would everyone of us.

    And I once saw a Beemer with the bumpersticker, "My other car is a Mercedes-Benz".

    It's people like that, that Dr. Kevorkian was made for.

    And I love reading the things people will plaster on their cars but would probably hesitate to say in person.

    Exactly! Good observation.

    It's easy to say, "Keep honking, I'm reloading", when you're buzzing past at 100mph. ;)

    For those who'd like to advertise but dread scraping off old stickers, you can buy a magnetic backer - place your sitkcer on the magnet, not on your car.

    Great idea, thanks Pastor_Jeff. :)

    Cheers,
    Victoria

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Wed Jan 25, 04:27:00 pm GMT-5  

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