"How's that Hope & Change Working Out For You?"
"the child being aborted has no-choice"
"NO UTERUS NO OPINION"
"NO...I'M PRETTY SURE THAT GUNS KILL PEOPLE"
"Driver carries only $20 worth of ammunition"
"Drive a Hybrid...I need the gas!"
"Nothing dumber than driving a Hummer."
"Stop, Drop, Roll will not work in Hell!"
"Have you hugged an Atheist today?"
(These phrases were all found on cafepress.com.)
Aren't bumper stickers entertaining? When I'm stuck at a red light behind someone whose vehicle is covered in bumper stickers, I love having something to do other than just breathing exhaust fumes.
My car is bumper sticker-free though. Honestly, the biggest reason I've never used bumper stickers is because I don't want to ruin my paint job. But in reading this post from Call Me Cate recently, I realized I have another reason for not using bumper stickers...specifically stickers that address emotional issues like politics, religion, abortion, etc.
In "real life" I think most of us can have friends who have opposite views from us on these issues. We can sense whether that person is respectful of us and our views, whether they are trying to force their views on us or not, etc. I know I'm always happy when I can have a respectful friendship with someone even though we disagree--it makes me feel like I'm NOT living in a bubble full of only people like me.
The problem with bumper stickers about such emotionally-charged issues is that there is very little nuance in a bumper sticker. Fellow drivers are being invited to make judgment calls. "That car must have someone in it who holds wonderfully high moral standards, and that one must contain a non-showering tree-hugger atheist." Or, "That car must have a closed-minded religious fanatic in it; that other driver is a sensitive, reasonable conservationist." (And that's two very different people, looking at the same two cars!)
Emotionally-charged bumper stickers invite those who agree with us to feel connected to us...and they invite those with opposite views to sneer in disgust. I've never heard of someone reading ten words on a bumper sticker and saying, "Oh, you're right! I think I'll alter my view on (religion, abortion, politics, gay marriage, etc.)!"
So I'd prefer that I tell people what I believe (when it's appropriate, and in a respectful way) instead of letting my car do the talking for me.