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tedibear's avatar

What do you think when you see a political sign posted outside a business?

Asked by tedibear (19111points) October 24th, 2020

I have seen a few local businesses with signs in favor of specific candidates. Some are presidential, some are local.

Would a sign for a specific candidate make you consider, or re-consider, your patronage of that business? Would you prefer to know the owner’s political leanings, or to do business with people who keep politics separate from business?

Do you think that people who own businesses and put up signs that support specific candidates have thought through the potential ramifications of this action? Or, is part of their thought process that they would rather not do business with someone who supports an opposing candidate?

I hope the answers to this can remain civil and neutral. My goal is not to discuss specific candidates.

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17 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

Yes, I would, and have, reconsidered my patronage of certain businesses based on their declared-to-the-public support of certain people and/or parties. If they are proud enough to declare their support, they may well be contributing to policies and circumstances that I can’t, in good conscience, myself support. If their beliefs align with mine, I will likely support them.

I have been told by some that it is hypocritical to base supporting a business on that, when otherwise I wouldn’t know where their affiliation lies, but I don’t agree. The bald political statement is an absolute declaration, the rest is likely speculation.

LuckyGuy's avatar

If the sign is for a local candidate I figure the shopkeeper either knows the person or has been approached and asked to put it up. It makes no difference to me.
This presidential election is so contentious and derisive I do not want to discuss politics at all.

The political sign pretty much tells me what they think of Covid-19 and the hygiene I can expect to see inside. I act accordingly.

Demosthenes's avatar

I have not observed any businesses here publicly endorsing presidential candidates, but some have endorsed local ones. I have no issue with that personally as I understand that, as @LuckyGuy says, local candidates may have visited the business and given them signs to post and certain local candidates may have pledged to support certain businesses, etc. Also I just plain don’t feel that strongly about local candidates to consider a business’ endorsement of one to be a deal breaker. As for taking a side in the presidential campaign, I live in a very liberal area where posting a Trump sign would surely tank their business. I would not refuse to patronize a business with a presidential campaign sign out front but I would not want to be bombarded with propaganda while shopping nor would I want to feel like I am making a statement by shopping there.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Just today I went somewhere else because of the Trump sign outside.

Fortunately, what I needed could be found at any hardware store, so I went to one about three miles from where the closer (trump supporter) store was.

Brian1946's avatar


What was the business that displayed the Trump sign?

elbanditoroso's avatar

Family owned hardware (actually franchise of Ace, I think),

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I’m not a fan of political signs. They rarely, if ever, provide information on their political stance. If the business is owned or run by the candidate, that might be one thing. If there are employees, were they asked how they feel about it?

canidmajor's avatar

@LuckyGuy brings up a good point. I used to have a favorite diner in my town, until the owner started being very pro Trump on the business Facebook page. And now, with Covid, and the cavalier attitude that the president has toward it, I would not be comfortable even doing take out from them now.

tedibear's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer , that was something else I wondered. Are the employees okay with working somewhere that displays its politics? I would be uncomfortable with that as an employee, especially if I had a customer-facing position. I was taught when at work, you don’t discuss politics,religion, or sex. The conversations could go wrong, even if the employee remains neutral.

LadyMarissa's avatar

I find it in poor taste to mix business with personal politics. I was raised that there are 2 things that you don’t discuss with anyone…politics & religion. My Mom always said that everybody is entitled to their opinion & both politics & religion constitute VERY personal opinions & arguing the point is fruitless!!!

I have 2 local businesses that I’ve stopped visiting due to their attitude, I walked into one & heard the owner discussing his lust for trump. That didn’t bother me although I wasn’t thrilled to hear him declare it. Then he went on to say that anyone who didn’t vote for trump was an idiot. I took it very personal & decided that this idiot didn’t need anything that he had in his store & I left & haven’t been back. I know that he would have NEVER looked me in the eyes & called me an idiot & I feel that he should be smart enough to understand that NOT every customer feels the way that he does & calling the customers in the store idiots was NOT one of the smarter things that he’s done!!! I have noticed that the parking spots in front of his store are empty more often than they used to be.

The other is my doctor who wore a mask when we first went into lockdown & she required patients to wear masks as well. I’ve always known that she was a rabid trump supporter & I decided to just refuse to discuss politics with her IF the subject ever came up. Well, since trump started attacking wearing masks, she & her office staff have stopped wearing masks & now NONE of he patients are wearing them either. She’s stopped disinfecting the table between patients & I find that wrong on so many levels. She treats around 80 patients a day & I see that as an imperative reason to have face masks worn. So, I’ve decided to continue to do what has protected me so far & I’m taking care of me first. I wear my mask on going in & I don’t remove it until I return home where I can wash thoroughly. Now I’ve decided that since she doesn’t care enough to take care of her patients, that I don’t care enough to continue going. I might end up having to go back, but I’ll most definitely check out other options before I do!!!

Now that there’s a new surge in cases, I feel it is MORE important than ever to take care of me first & that’s going to mean that I’ll have some tough decisions to make!!!

Nomore_lockout's avatar

Makes no difference to me, I’m not that into politics. If the business has something I need, I’ll get in and purchase it. People are entitled to their own beliefs, so if they want to support Monk Rasputin or Jack the Ripper, I could honestly care less.

Jaxk's avatar

I would agree with most of you in that I never posted any political signs on my business. I was in business to sell things and anything that might limit that is counter productive. Of course there are always some exceptions. If I ran an abortion clinic, I might post a prochoice sign. Or maybe a measure that might put me out of business. Otherwise, the customer is always right.

cookieman's avatar

I think they are okay with possibly alienating part of their customer base.

LadyMarissa's avatar

@Nomore_lockout I have NO political affiliation!!! I didn’t care that the owner was a republican. I DO care that he feels that I’m an “idiot” for not voting the way he feels inclined to vote. I would feel EXACTLY the same IF he was a democrat!!! As far as I’m concerned, he stated firmly that he NO longer desires my business & I can buy anything he sells at a store that’s closer to my home for less money so he’s doing me a favor.

My best friend is a flaming republican & we have managed to be best friends for our entire lives. I have voted republican as many times as I have voted democrat. I just do NOT like trump the person. I would feel the same if he had gotten into office as a democrat!!!

When his business drops off, he’ll blame the democrats; but I see it as HIS own fault. I’ve NEVER once walked into his place of business & complained that he had a trump sign in the window because I feel that he has the right to support whoever he feels will do best by him. In the same vein, I feels that I have the SAME right!!!

Nomore_lockout's avatar

@LadyMarissa I feel ya, believe me.

kruger_d's avatar

In general it would not affect me, but honestly, I would feel unwelcome if it was a trump sign.

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