Even if you ignore the news altogether, it's pretty obvious whenever there's an election going on, simply by venturing outside.
Yes, once again, Cochrane's lawns, boulevards, and thoroughfares throughout the town are plastered with campaign material for the various political candidates running in this month's election, highlighting once again that it is soon time to head to the polls.
It's not a secret that almost no one actually likes campaign signs. They're always an eyesore, do little to promote any kind of political message, and after voting day, they're rounded up by the hundreds (or thousands?) and sent to the landfill.
There's also the problem of sign vandalism and destruction, which is an issue that pops up every election nowadays – highlighting the widening gulf in ideology among right-wing and left-wing voters.
Campaign signs tend to say little about a candidate, other than promote their name and the party they're running on behalf of. Occasionally a sign will direct viewers to a campaign website in the small print at the bottom, but that's pretty much it. Our newsroom doesn't think anyone will be inspired to vote for a certain party just based on the number of signs they see strewn about town.
Signs are also bad for the environment, as the material they're made from is not recyclable and so many of them get tossed in the garbage after the election is over.
If you're uncertain who to vote for this election, don't rely on a sign to sway your opinion. Watch the forums, follow the candidates on social media (or better yet, speak to them in person), and consume local news coverage. At the Cochrane Eagle, we strive to interview every candidate running and then cover at least one local candidates forum to give our readers a glimpse into who they are and what they stand for on various political issues.
There's lots of ways to learn about candidates and hear what they have to say. So let's do away with campaign signs.