A Massachusetts man says he built an electric fence around his Trump lawn sign to stop people from removing it after repeated thefts.
John Oliveira, a 54-year-old disabled veteran and local school committee member, told The Standard-Times this month that the move was intended to protect his First Amendment rights.
“I’m defending my property and my right to free speech,” he said. “This is about my right to free speech, period.”
Oliveira said his neighbors may complain about the electric fence but he defended the decision, saying the sign outside his home in New Bedford “hasn’t been touched in two weeks since the electric fence went up.”
He told local media that the fence is about 3 1/2-feet high and has safety wire with three small signs that say “Caution Electric Fence” in English, Spanish and French. The fence is solar powered and has an active current.
The Massachusetts man told the Standard-Times that he started displaying the sign on his lawn in May and it had been stolen four times since the end of July. The Trump supporter said the thefts are just “not right.”
Oliveira is a former longtime Democrat who recently changed his party affiliation to Republican, The Standard-Times reported.
“I think Trump is about keeping America on track,” he said when asked about his support for the president. “It’s about mutual respect. It’s not about taking people’s signs because you don’t agree with what they have to say.”