Cattle farmer Vern Verduin in Gaines Township, Mich. is fighting for the right to display two trailer-sized anti-Obama signs on his property. Local officials want him to take the signs down.
Mr. Conservative reported:
Every American understands that, of all the types of speech protected under the First Amendment, that speech which is given the highest protection is political speech. Well, not every American. The authorities in Gaines Township, Michigan, have a rule that signs with political messages must be limited to 20 square feet. By contrast, they say commercial signs can be 35 square feet. One man is determined to lead Gaines Township back to core constitutionalism.
Vern Verduin is a cattle farmer who believes that President Obama’s political goals are destructive and inconsistent with American values. He’s therefore parked two truck trailers on his property and posted two political messages:
Marxism/Socialism = Poverty & hunger
Obama’s ‘mission accomplished.’ 8% unemployment. 16 trillion debt.
Like commercial billboards, the signs are easy for passing drivers to see – and authorities in Gaines Township don’t like that. They are insisting that the signs violate a zoning ordinance that prohibits political signs larger than 20 square feet. The irony of this speech limitation, however, is that the same zoning laws allowing people to display a sign up to 32 feet square for the purpose of “selling ideas.” It doesn’t seem to occur to the Township that the ultimate “idea” is political thought.
Verduin has hired attorney Howard Van Den Huevel to help protect his free speech rights. Van Den Huevel is optimistic about the case’s outcome, telling a local news station that “This is clearly a violation of his free speech and free exercise right.”