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Trump prank against Democrat turns into free speech fight in Bremerton

Kevin Chambers was away in Denver when one of his buddies popped up a Trump-Pence campaign sign in his Bremerton front yard as a joke. But the backlash has prompted Chambers to rethink its removal.

Photos of the sign in Chambers’ yard

The 4×8 sign is getting a lot of attention along the busy street. Chambers told KTTH’s Jason Rantz he planned to take it down, but he said his friends noticed some comments on Facebook suggesting the neighbors wanted to come over and destroy the sign.

“At that point, I thought, wait a minute, this is my yard. It’s now bigger for me than Trump, it’s about what am I allowed to put in my yard at the risk of people threatening — I have young kids at home and I don’t think it’s cool that people want to go all vigilante about some silly sign.”

Chambers said he’s not even a Trump supporter.

“In fact, I’m pretty much a Democrat,” he told Rantz. “I’m defending the Trump sign, while not even really defending Trump.”

Chambers said he thinks it’s sad that we can’t disagree without being disagreeable. He thinks if you’re that upset over a sign, it’s time to rethink your priorities in life.

He considered adding a campaign sign for the other side, reaching out to Kitsap County Democrats.

Now the city of Bremerton is involved after Chambers’ friend replaced a graffiti’ed sign with a clean version, hoisted on stilts 15 feet in the air. He even attached a camera to monitor any potential vandalism.

Chambers said he received a notice from the city warning him that his sign is too tall. He has until Jan. 21 to move the sign below six feet. The warning wasn’t about the content of the sign.

“I firmly believe if this was a Democratic candidate in Kitsap County, this would have gone unnoticed,” Chambers said.

Rantz wanted to know if the great sign dilemma has changed the way Chambers understands the plight of Trump supporters in a predominantly blue region of Washington state.

“One of my best friends is an avid Trump supporter. He’s been railing for years about the inequality of how mainstream Republicans and Trump supporters are treated,” Chambers explained. “I’ve kind of gotten it but not to this extent. You can see now why they feel the way they feel. But it’s no different than how Dems felt when Obama was in office. We’re such a divisive country now. Nobody wants to meet in the middle, or understand or agree. It’s just about hurling rocks at each other.”

Chambers plans to reach out to the city this week to talk about his options.

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