Long-time area newspaper owner Marvin Case offers his opinions on the ability of Clark County residents to freely express their political opinions
Editor’s note: Opinions expressed in this column are those of the author alone and do not reflect the editorial position of ClarkCountyToday.com
I was in Carson City, Nevada earlier this month and couldn’t help but notice all the Trump-Pence lawn signs. They were everywhere, with no apparent vandalism or backlash. Nevada is considered somewhat left-leaning but a swing state. Hillary Clinton won Nevada in 2016. There were some Biden signs here and there, and it was a pleasure to see people expressing their opinions in a peaceful way.
But that does not seem to be the case here in Clark County. It does not seem to be safe to post a Trump-Pence sign in Clark County.
I know of one person in Vancouver who hung a Trump banner at their home a month ago. A rock went through their window. There is no proof that the rock was a result of the Trump banner but they believe there was a connection.
It seems absurd that people in Clark County cannot post Trump signs for fear of vandalism even though there is no danger of Washington casting its electoral votes for Trump. Clark County voted narrowly for Clinton in 2016, and voters in King, Thurston and Snohomish counties made sure the state’s electors went to Clinton. No doubt Biden will win the state this year. There is no need to damage homes with Trump signs in our area if the objective is to assure Biden carries the state and earns its electors.
The media often refers to “right wing” in a way that implies threats of guns and violence. I just don’t see that. Clark County residents fear ridicule, vandalism — or worse — if they use their Constitutional freedom of speech and support Trump. Some people feel muzzled.
The continuing rioting in Portland is not being carried out by “right wing” extremists. Why are left-leaning people so bent on brow-beating Trump supporters, destroying property, and limiting free speech? As far as I can tell, right-leaning people are not the instigators of the violence and looting that plagues Portland.
I find similar actions appalling at some universities where students, and maybe others, riot and burn campus facilities when a conservative speaker is scheduled. Don’t those extremists see the ignorance they demonstrate when they suppress an opposing view? If they don’t want to hear that speaker, just don’t go. But why burn buildings, block entrances and topple facilities to stop that person from speaking? It makes no sense, especially at enlightened college campuses.
I’m tempted to post a Trump-Pence sign in my yard, activate all my security cameras, and hope the police can apprehend any vandals. But then, it’s much safer to put out a Biden sign, so maybe I’ll do that instead.