Backlash against the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia got a little out of control, and a little gross, on Tuesday, culminating in one 51-year-old protester getting arrested after throwing "chicken poop" in the general direction of the Sarah Huckabee Sanders-persecuting restaurant.
The fallout from the decision of the Red Hen's owner to ask Sanders to leave because she works for the Trump administration, and then allegedly helping to stir up a protest against Sanders mostly-liberal family afterward, continues.
The owner, Stephanie Wilkinson, has resigned from her role of director of a local non-profit group designed to promote businesses in the city as a result of the distraction she now presents. "Considering the events of the past weekend, Stephanie felt it best, that for the continued success of Main Street Lexington, she should step aside," the president of the board said.
On Tuesday, Wilkinson's restaurant, which has remained closed since the incident, was visited by a group of protesters who were outraged by the anti-Trumper bigotry. One of those protesters, a West Virginia man, is facing charges after allegedly throwing chicken poop at the restaurant.
WSET reports on the rather raucous group of people, which, along with the feces-flinging West Virginian, included one guy carrying a sign declaring "homos are full of demons":
Tuesday, people turned to the street with their signs in hand to protest the restaurant, which has remained closed since the incident.
Outside the Red Hen people were chanting and held homemade signs, Corey Stewart campaign signs and American and Make America Great Again flags.
Another man held signs that said "Homos are full of demons" and "Unless they repent Let God Burn Them (LGBT) 2 Peter 2:6."
The West Virginian, Reginald Scott Lee, 51, "was arrested and charged with littering and disorderly conduct," NBC4 reports.
Some video of the protest as well as photographic evidence of the gross protest material below:
The firestorm over the Red Hen began when Sanders posted a brief account about her ill-treatment at the hands of Wilkinson:
Sanders handled the ugly situation with class, which Wilkinson later confirmed. The Daily Wire reports:
"I have a business, and I want the business to thrive. This feels like the moment in our democracy when people have to make uncomfortable actions and decisions to uphold their morals," Wilkinson told the Post. Several of her employees, she said, are gay and disagreed with Trump's call for a ban on transgender troops in the military. "Tell me what you want me to do. I can ask her to leave," she says she told her staff. "They said yes."
After telling the press secretary who she was, Wilkinson said she asked for her to come out to the patio, where she "explained that the restaurant has certain standards that I feel it has to uphold, such as honesty, and compassion, and cooperation. I said, 'I'd like to ask you to leave.'" Sanders respectfully agreed to leave and offered to pay for the food that was being prepared. "I said, no," Wilkinson said. "It’s on the house."
But that was not the full story.
"There’s a part of that story that has not been told," Sanders' father Mike Huckabee told Laura Ingraham over the weekend. "Once Sarah and her family left — of course Sarah was asked to please vacate — Sarah and her husband just went home, they’d had enough. But, the rest of her family went across the street to a different restaurant. The owner of the Red Hen — nobody’s told this — then followed them across the street, called people and organized a protest, yelling and screaming at them from outside the other restaurant and creating this scene."
The incident has set off a series of debates over the increasing degree of incivility of protesters and the personal harassment of political figures, which Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters infamously called for after the targeting of Sanders.