Signs of the times

Elaine Young
Elaine Young
Salarina Coronel
Salarina Coronel

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

WAIMANALO (KHNL) - It usually happens around this time, during an election year. Campaign signs springing up around the state.

Waimanalo is known for its country setting, but come election time, the quiet rural community makes noise as political country.

At a ranch along Kamehameha Highway, they are not horsing around when it comes to getting involved politically.

Dozens of signs line the fence, as they have every election for years.

That's also the case up the road for long time resident Elaine Young.

"I've done it every year since I've lived here, they come and ask me and we put up the signs, my husband and I," said Young.

Signs are an important part of the campaign. Candidates hope they show their support in communities.

"Putting up signs, that's how we judge a candidate's ability to connect at a grassroots level," said Honolulu Mayor, Mufi Hannemann.

While it makes sense to have a lot of signs supporting one candidate, it can be a little confusing when competing candidates signs are posted together.

But some residents put up different signs just to get to know candidates.

"The candidates come and talk and give us the rundown of what they are doing during the year. It helps to know the candidates and what they are running for and if it will help the community itself," added Young.

Some communities seem to be overrun with signs.

While there are no limits on how many can line the streets, long time Waimanalo residents have just one rule for putting them up.

"When the time comes I make sure they come back and take their signs off," said Salarina Coronel, of Waimanalo.

For those who are bothered by all the political ads, the good news is they should be all gone by December. And in case you were wondering, there is no limit to the number of signs around a house, as long as they are not a hazard. Campaign signs, unlike business and commercial ads are protected by First Amendment rights.