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Should Decorah City Council members have "Vote Yes" signs in their yards?

Posted: Sun, Apr 8, 2018 7:52 AM

(Several readers have complained that their city council representative has a "Vote Yes May 1st" sign in the front yard of their home):

Mr. (Electric) Answer Person says: "There is a part of the Bill of Rights that is even more important than the Second Amendment right to carry AK-47s.  It's the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech.

As a journalist, I will always defend that freedom--including the freedom of Decorah City Council members to put a yard sign in front of their homes.

For the record, Decorah City Council members Steve Luse, Johanna Bergan, Ross Hadley and Kirk Johnson have "Vote Yes May 1st" signs in their front yards, while Decorah City Council members Randy Schissel, Dan Bellrichard and Andy Carlson have sign-free yards.

To those who have raised this question, Mr. (Electric) Answer Person would ask: "Are you complaining because they are 'Vote Yes' yard signs or would you also complain if they were a 'Vote No' yard sign, because you don't think city council members should post yard signs?"

If it's not the yard sign but the position you're objecting to, I have a suggestion: Talk to your city council representative.  Tell him or her what your position is on the May 1st, then ask him or her what they believe is the top reason to vote "yes" and the top reason to vote "no."  This should start a real discussion of the issues involved and avoid a yelling contest.  At, we sometimes take a public position on a local issue, but then we make every effort to give voice to other opinions.  That's what good public officials do, also.  So exercise your First Amendment right to speech and talk--politely--to your elected city council member."