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Gov't. Banner - Right Location?

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Motorcycles Topics:  Illinois Department of Transportation

Gov't. Banner - Right Location?

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
June 4, 2008

Should a banner funded by tax dollars be displayed in a manner to look like advertising of a commercial business?

A large, yellow Start Seeing Motorcycles banner is tied to a chain-link fence next to the Harley-Davidson dealership in Woodstock. This banner was produced with government funding through a joint program of the U.S. Government, IDOT's Traffic Safety Division and the Illinois State Police. A photo of this banner appears with an article written previously.

The placement of the banner next to the Harley dealership may infer that it is advertising of this particular dealership. Its location, well off the highway, means that it is not generally visible to passing drivers.

Is there a better place for this banner? How about on the railroad bridge over Route 47? In front of Memorial Medical Hospital? In front of Farm & Fleet, Kmart, Wal-Mart? On the vacant property just north of the DMV? Perhaps it could be moved every 30 days so that drivers continue to see it and be reminded to "see motorcycles."

So far, in 1,500+ miles of touring on this trip, only one driver hasn't seen me. Many motorcycle operators ride defensively; that is, we expect driver not to see us, and we are continually prepared to take evasive action.

Where do you think would be a good place for this banner?

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