Where Do The Campaign Signs Go?

Larry Price
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Wednesday - September 15, 2010
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After all these years, there is one thing I have never gotten used to: political signs lining fences on just about every street on Oahu.

I’ve never asked a homeowner if they were really supporting a particular candidate or they just couldn’t say no when asked to borrow their fence for a couple of months.

It’s really interesting to see residences that display campaign signs for both parties in a particular race. I suspect that those homeowners just can’t say no to either one.

Of course, declaring that you support an unpopular candidate could cause a lot of retribution down the road, so to speak.

Besides waiting for the results of the primary and the conclusion of the general election, seeing the campaign signs come down is a most welcome sight. Many experienced campaigners have generic signs so they can be used again and again.


Probably my biggest curiosity about campaign signs is that they are sometimes stolen by the opposition. What do you do with a stolen campaign sign?

What has really perplexed me over the years is that graffiti artists around town haven’t put their marks on the campaign signs. Graffiti is international when it comes to assaulting signs. There are very few places in the world where graffiti is totally absent from public view. They will tag everything that is stationary; they will climb mountains, scale tall structures and slide down barriers to place their mark on an object to mark their territory.

I can’t figure out why political signs are spared.

Do teenagers have some kind of reverence for campaign signs? I don’t think so. Are they afraid of the candidates? Not likely. Changing letters on a campaign poster could be highly entertaining for the voting public. The teenagers could market their creativity and become legends in their communities. So much so, that political candidates might boycott certain communities for fear of graffiti attacks on their campaign signs.

I’m not suggesting that graffiti vandalism is a good thing and I’m not condoning defacing personal or public property. But the graffiti artists have discriminated against politicians. Why should their signs not be like any other piece of property in the community?


Come November, the annoying signs will come down and be stored somewhere for the next contest.

It makes me wonder if half of the public storage space on Oahu is rented out to political candidates waiting for the next race.

In the meantime, maybe the candidates who get elected can consider a law that warrants homeowners being reimbursed for allowing advertisements to hang from their fences. It would give the residents a way to make a few bucks to pay their property taxes.

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