A vague, homemade billboard off the south side of Interstate 80 in Cheyenne drew an emotional response from people when they learned the sign owner’s true message: They’ve had it with the American government, and they’re going to tell people how they feel about it.
The more than 20-foot-tall sign facing the eastbound lanes of I-80 about 11 miles west of Cheyenne reads in large red letters, “We The People Are Pissed.”
The sign is the work of Jeannette and Andrew Kahler, who told Cowboy State Daily they are disturbed by the current state of America’s election integrity, taxes and President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.
Cowboy State Daily received a number of messages from people reacting with how they feel about the billboard, some who support the Kahlers and others who are as “pissed” at the Cheyenne couple for expressing their opinion.
Free Speech Or Undeserved Platform?
A few people like Jackson resident Bob Skaggs criticized Cowboy State Daily for providing the Kahlers a platform to discuss their views and their sign.
Skaggs said what Jeannette Kahler is mad about is “demonstrably false and part of the big lie promoted by the former president.”
“Why promote this kind of nonsense?” he questioned.
Former President Donald Trump questioned the results of the 2020 election, which included claims that voting machines were corrupted. Nearly all of Trump’s legal challenges over the 2020 election were thrown out.
Casper resident Gunars Hvastkovs said the couple are misinformed and their billboard makes them “no more a patriot than any January 6th participant.”
Centennial resident Roger Rayda called the couple “stupid Trumpists,” while Riverton resident Bob Hargis described them as “seditionists wanna be patriots.”
Jeanette Kahler said she doesn’t understand people who want viewpoints they disagree with to not be voiced. She said she’s always interested in hearing opinions that are different from her own.
“I don’t understand that kind of closed-mindedness,” she said. “It’s a very gross thing in American culture right now, where if someone has a differing opinion, they don’t want to hear about it.”
New Wyoming resident John Meadows said although he respects the Kahlers’ First Amendment rights and choice to put up a billboard on their own private property, he disagrees with the message and said their energy could have been put to better use.
“This sign is a piece of litter that could be expressed in a different way,” he said. “Maybe the folks should look deep into their lives and at items they can be grateful for.”
The Kahlers moved to Wyoming from Colorado about three years ago. Jeanette Kahler said they moved to Wyoming for the state’s “conservative values.”
One of the signs the Kahlers put up in the past was in honor of Marvin Heemeyer. In 2004, Heemeyer bulldozed various buildings in Granby, Colorado, in response to what he saw as a local government that treated him unfairly.
The Boogaloo Boys, a far-right extremist group, have treated Heemeyer as a martyr of sorts. Jeanette Kahler said they have no affiliation with this group, or any other group for that matter.
Kahler said she’s only personally received positive feedback about her sign and the coverage from it.
Cowboy State Daily also had a number of people offering support for the couple, like Cecil Ihfe.
“Everything you said is so true,” she said. “We love you guys, keep on keeping on.”
Although the Kahlers did not list the wind turbines that surround their property on their list of gripes, Sheridan resident Pat Wolfe said they should have been.
“I think wind turbines are awful and take away from the beauty of this state,” she said. “They kill birds and cannot be recycled.”
‘So Good Here’
Meadows mentioned how free speech is unprotected in certain parts of the world and how some people in America take it for granted.
“I am not a Biden supporter by any means, but for now, he is my president,” he said. “I had to support Trump while he was in office. If people of this country could simply appreciate what they have instead of hanging litter on our beautiful highways.”
Hvastkovs said Wyoming residents enjoy a wonderful quality of life and have little to complain about.
“We have it so good here that people just don’t realize it and I can’t believe that anybody would be complaining -the main complaint we have is with our local legislators-and that can be fixed in the next election,” he said.
Hargis and Hvastkovs both mentioned how Wyoming has one of the lowest tax rates in the country and has no state income tax. According to the U.S. News and World Report, the Cowboy State has the fourth lowest tax burden in the nation.
“What can these people possibly be mad about; living in Wyoming they pay no taxes-the mineral industry pays bulk of our expenses,” he said. “Is that Socialism? We’ve got great roads; great schools.”
Former Wyoming resident Reddy Hannum offered a similar sentiment.
“Taxes keep the country running,” she said. “If they don’t approve of how that money is spent, don’t grab a gun, grab a pen and paper and contact your local representatives.”
Wyoming is in the top 10 in the nation for per-pupil education funding. Although many of the state’s test scores do not match up to this level of funding, Wyoming had the highest fourth grade math scores in the nation in 2022.
Leo Wolfson can be reached at Leo@CowboyStateDaily.com.