Lewis County Sheriff’s Response To Washington Governor’s Mask Directive: ‘Don’t Be A Sheep’

In this screenshot from a YouTube video, Lewis County Sheriff Robert Snaza tells a crowd "Don't be a sheep" when it comes to following Gov. Jay Inslee's face covering order.
In this screenshot from a YouTube video, Lewis County Sheriff Robert Snaza tells a crowd "Don't be a sheep" when it comes to following Gov. Jay Inslee's face covering order. CREDIT: The Daily Chronicle/YouTube

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Hours after Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee announced a statewide mandate for people to wear masks in public, a Republican sheriff in southwest Washington appeared to urge open defiance of the order. 

“Don’t be a sheep,” Lewis County Sheriff Robert Snaza said to loud applause from a mostly mask-less crowd gathered in a church parking lot.

Snaza’s comments were captured by a photographer for The Daily Chronicle newspaper and posted to YouTube.

On Wednesday, Klickitat County Sheriff Bob Songer, who has previously refused to enforce state laws and was recently featured in The New Yorker magazine, also blasted Inslee’s order in an interview with Oregon Public Broadcasting. Songer called the governor an “idiot” and said he’s “overstepping his bounds, violating people’s constitutional rights.”

In the video from Lewis County, Snaza — in uniform and without a mask himself – uses a megaphone to address the crowd.

“In case you guys didn’t hear, Governor Inslee in his infinite wisdom has decided after over a hundred and some odd days that we should all wear face masks — inside and out,” Snaza told the group.

The crowd had gathered near the base of a billboard that sits alongside Interstate 5 in Napavine that has become the target of a petition drive to have it removed.

This privately owned

This privately owned “Uncle Sam” billboard along I-5 in Lewis County has for decades been a message board for provocative conservative messages. Recently, it’s become the subject of a petition to have it taken down. CREDIT: Tom Banse/N3

For decades, the owner of the billboard has posted politically conservative, and often provocative, messages about government overreach, immigration and Democratic politicians.

A recent