Here’s an interesting takedown of that now famously impish “Coexist” bumper sticker:
- C wants to kill E, X, T, and (by implication) O. If they achieved the world they wanted, I and S would also no longer exist.
- O doesn’t allow for effective resistance or defeat of C.
- E stands in direct opposition to C, X, and T, and accuses those who speak against them of hate speech. Also, they’re trying to edge X and T out of public schools in favor of their own agenda. (They’re afraid C will be offended, so they get less trouble.) E is actually very, very intolerant.
- X’s existence is threatened not only by C but also by O, who invariably supports C over X.
- I and S are statistically insignificant and are mainly on there to complete the bumper sticker.
- T is who the bumper sticker is really arguing against, but poses no physical threat to any of the others.
Such are the casualties of statement-by-bumper-sticker politics. When you actually endeavor to dissect the meaning behind the slogans, you see there’s not much more there than too-clever-by-half puns and graphic gimmickry.