To the Editor:
I recently saw a handful of lawn signs popping up around Haddonfield, and it reminded me that the election season is once again upon us. It also brought to mind the wise words of Haddonfield resident, Nelson Euler, who regrettably passed away a few years ago.
Nelson once wrote a letter to this paper expressing his love/hate relationship with lawn signs. “I, for one,” he wrote, “appreciate the First Amendment right of every candidate to put their name out there on a sign, but the lawn-sign battles that sometimes ensue tend to distract from the real substantive issues.”
This reality is being made clear in the current run-up to the Haddonfield Borough Commissioner election on Nov. 5. One of the front-runners, Colleen Bezich, is making use of lawn signs, but on her website, she states that she prefers not to declare “a pet cause or speak loudly on a single issue.” Meanwhile, the other front-runner, Robert (Bob) Marshall, has opted to not place lawn signs, but his campaign literature lays out clearly his key positions on various issues such as the Bancroft property.
Given the choice, I want candidates to make their positions known so that we understand for whom we are voting. Certainly, I would not refuse a lawn sign from Bob Marshall if they were available, but I respect the view of such candidates that lawn signs are unsightly and represent a wasted expenditure as they say nothing about a candidate’s positions. Ultimately, such common sense and fiscal responsibility are more of what we need from our local elected officials.
Mr. Marshall is not the first candidate in a Haddonfield election to disavow lawn signs, by the way. I know of a handful of candidates who have done the same in the past. In those cases, some of those candidates recommended that local residents donate the 5 or 10 dollars that they would have given to a candidate, for a lawn sign to one of our local organizations such as the Civic Association, Historical Society, or Friends of the Library. I think that is sound advice.