When Using Symbols to Create Divisions Goes too Far

This letter is paid content. Let’s begin by saying that I think we can all agree that Election Day cannot come soon enough.

With that being said, in an election year, especially in today’s age is one filled with polarization and much emotion. This is no surprise, and the feelings we have towards politics today take their roots in events that go back decades.

Election years also bring out the means that candidates get their name and party brand out into the electorate. Such ways are signage or advertisements. We have all seen various signs or ads around town that show someone’s support for a candidate(s). It is everyone’s right to display their signs of support and I champion the freedom we have in this country to do so.

One thing regarding signage that really upsets me is that the District 12 Republicans want to play the identity politics game with their signage. I find it disheartening seeing the digital billboard at 10th St SE and 1st Ave S advertisements for the D12 Republicans that show a Thin Blue Line Flag saying that they support Law Enforcement. Here’s a newsflash for you, many people from the other side of the aisle support law enforcement. Many people everyday support law enforcement by not giving a reason for law enforcement to go after them by simply following the law. I have many friends in law enforcement and I don’t need a political party to reinforce that support. 

Also, I find it disheartening that they have a sign showing an American Flag with the usual plastic patriotism rhetoric of “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” as a symbol that only their party supports the Constitution. As a combat veteran, I fought for your “Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of Happiness. As a representative of all Americans, and the first 300 meters of foreign policy on the ground, I fought for your rights to uphold those words by taking an oath to, “Support and Defend the Constitution.”

I ask myself when does this end? Will the next sign be one regarding religion. Where a religious symbol is used as a means of saying one side is so religious, when the other are utter heathens? Also, if that’s your future plan, we have a separation of church and state in this country for a reason and let’s keep it that way.

How much longer are we going to endure the constant barrage of symbols being used as wedges to divide us. Where its seen as only one side of the political spectrum is so very good and the other side so very bad. The American flag should be a symbol that brings us together. Law enforcement should be something we all support in our community as these brave individuals are our friends and neighbors.

We need to put our draft horse blinders aside and not use patriotic symbols to further the division that has already driven wedges into friendships and relationships among ourselves.

D12 Republicans, you’re better than that. Keep it local, and stop the national narrative noise, or at least tell Odney Advertising that.

Brandon Delvo, Jamestown