…because some people are too stupid to know the difference.  Therefore I’m having to waste time on providing remedial education for people who should have known such things as this before exiting primary school.

THESE are cross-hair symbols:

They represent the optical aiming system of a ballistic weapon, such as a gun.  That image comes from the Wikipedia entry for “Reticle” in case you wish to learn more.

THIS is a target symbol:

It represents the destination or objective to which a projectile will travel.  Said projectile is understood to be launched from a ballistic weapon of some sort.

THESE are surveyor symbols:

These represent points of interest, typically on a geographic map.

Now, let’s take these facts and practice a little applied knowledge.  Check out this screen shot:

That is the Democratic Leadership Committee’s targeting strategy map from 2004.  Please note that they are using ‘target’ symbols.

Now looks at this screen shot:

That is the map from Sarah Palin’s Facebook page.   It shows the locations of politically vulnerable Democrats that voted in favor of the 2008 Health Care legislation.  Please note that it uses a ‘surveyor’ symbol.  If you don’t believe this, please further note that the “cross-hairs” extend OUTSIDE of the circle.  Cross-hairs DON’T extend outside of the circle.  Anyone who has used an optical sighting system knows this.  If you still don’t understand the differences, please scroll back to the top of this post and start again.

(h/t to John at VerumSerum for his article that inspired me to put this post together.)