The Lakeland Mirror

Snarky Bumper Stickers

Leah Ulatowski, Copy Editor

Bumper stickers are a rite of passage for the modern college student. One stroll through a campus lot reveals countless vehicles with bumper art, and it isn’t unusual to see a rear window boarded up with it.

Like tattoos, bumper stickers may be comical or thought provoking, but can just as easily be trashy or downright offensive. I fear many students and perhaps even some professors have succumbed to the epidemic of motor tramp stamps.

Stickers are like Facebook in that we can rage without facing others, but like internet activity or a trashy tattoo, they can come back to haunt us and reflect on our character. Not only can they demonstrate immaturity to an employer, but certain people who could have expanded our horizons may choose to avoid us.

As a commuter student, I note such artin our parking lots. Some cars simply bear a comical sticker, or one asserting allegiance to a fandom or school. These are normal. The rear ends of one too many vehicles, however, hit innocent passersby with a wall of accusatory political rancor.

Now, we have every right to parade political stickers, but it should be done respectfully. An Obama campaign sticker in a conservative neighborhood could open up discussion. A Pro-Second Amendment sticker on a woman’s car could be the difference between a carjacker confronting her or the “Coexist” car a few feet away.Political stickers have their place, but offensive, dumbed-down advocate art doesn’t do anyone any favors.

You’re a “revolutionary” studentstriving to be “outspoken” and think the guy driving behind you cares about your opinion. I get it, but in reality, your snarky sticker is so void of fact that everyone would prefer you remove it and actually be able tosee out the rear window.

I recently spotted a sticker that said not to reproduce like a wild animal and instead “plan” your “parenthood.”

Okay…I don’t desire kids at the moment and have means by which to avoid impregnation that have nothing to do with a government agency; see how easy it is to write off such silliness?

I wouldn’t engage someone who thought me a creature uncaring of my future because I don’t support Planned Parenthood—not because I wouldn’t accept a friend who supports it, but because said person obviously holds prejudice toward people for being different.

Simplistic political stickers are tasteful and promote discussion. I’ve seen one that says, “Women’s Right to Choose: Revolver or Pistol,” which is thought provoking without hatefulness. Now, you can coddle your snarky stamps, but be prepared to miss out on the life experiences of those more respectful and open-minded.

 

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Leah Ulatowski, 2015 Executive Editor

Leah Ulatowski is a senior majoring in writing with minors in criminal justice and English literature. She started working for The Mirror as a freshman...

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Snarky Bumper Stickers