Whether you’re protesting or supporting an issue, there is a right way and a wrong way to behave at a rally. So often, though, people miss the point and end up weakening their position or even hurting their cause. Here are five things not to do at a rally you attend.
Don’t engage in violence
This is just common sense and obvious to those who are sane. If you’re the type of person who is easily prone to anger and violence, you might want to take an introspective look at yourself and consider seeking help. Violence at a rally hurts the cause you’re supporting and is unfair to those on your side of an issue. Also, it only takes one video clip of someone behaving badly to hit social media and go viral before the so-called mainstream media picks up on it and spreads it worldwide. This is a tactic the left frequently employs. Don’t get caught in their trap.
Don’t call your opponents names
When someone isn’t able to have a civil conversation and discuss the facts of an issue, taking the low road and reverting to name-calling is a sure way to weaken an argument. Plus, it’s extremely childish. Let your opponent do the name-calling and you’ll be the bigger person.
Don’t bring ineffective signs
What’s the point of showing up with a sign that has a paragraph of information on an 18” x 24” footprint? What passerby is able to read small print on a poster board in two seconds as he’s driving by? It might be effective for anyone standing close enough to read it, but in that case you’re likely preaching to the choir. Instead, come up with a short message that fits your poster’s space using large enough letters and dark enough ink to be able to be read. If you have a ton of information to share, your better option is to create flyers or leaflets and hand them out.
Don’t dress up in a silly costume
If what you’re wearing is just over-the-top and goofy (e.g. dressed like Uncle Sam), you’re likely to turn people off and never win them over to your side. The line between having an unapologetic love for your country and being overly patriotic is not blurred. Sporting a shirt with the American flag is great, but do everyone a favor and don’t wear clothes that look like they were made from an American flag. Like it or not, people judge and sometimes they have a legitimate point. Who wants to be a part of a group where a few people dress in ridiculous attire and make the rest look bad? Most don’t.
Don’t use a bullhorn
As eager as you may be to emphasize your points, being in public shouting through a bullhorn just annoys people, and they aren’t going to listen to you if they’re annoyed. Sure you may have something very important you feel people need to hear, but this method is ineffective. Unless the rally is a meeting open only to members of your group, avoid using a bullhorn.
Taking part in a rally can be highly fulfilling, liberating and empowering. Carrying out what you feel is your patriotic duty is important but sometimes it comes at the cost of others ridiculing you. But have courage and take comfort in knowing you’re right in standing for what you believe in. Most of all, be smart. Don’t give ammunition to your opponent.
Tom Folden is a political strategist, conservative thinker, and Editor of RightWingWriter.com, a website for conservative viewpoints. A human rights activist, he is a firm believer in the Constitution and the rule of law. He is also a singer/songwriter and recording artist. For interviews and/or appearances, please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.