Not All Protesters Are Equal

I have seen several articles in recent days about the on-going cases stemming from the massive anti-abortion protests that took place at Notre Dame surrounding President Obama’s address there last month.

Both the Thomas More Law Center and the American Center for Law and Justice have stepped in to provide representation and the right-wing narrative seems to be disbelief that these protesters are even being prosecuted:

Attorney Tom Dixon told (LSN) Tuesday that none of the charges have been dropped, and only two individuals accepted an offer to plead guilty in return for a sentence of time served and a fine. The rest face a maximum sentence of a year and prison and a $5,000 fine.

Asked about Notre Dame’s involvement in the case, Dixon said he has “not heard anything” from the school, “except that they don’t have any interest in exploring ways to resolve these matters.”

“The general council’s office of Notre Dame has responded to me by saying that Fr. Jenkins has no interest in discussing these matters any further,” Dixon told LSN. The attorney said he sought help from Notre Dame’s Bishop John D’Arcy to intercede with Fr. Jenkins, but has gotten no reply from the bishop’s office.

Dixon said he does not think Jenkins “has any idea just how oppressive are these cases to these people.”

“I just have to think that if he did have any idea, he would make some statement about how he doesn’t desire to see them prosecuted,” he added.

Oddly, there doesn’t seem to be any similar sort of right-wing crusade to turn these anti-abortion protesters into martyrs – I wonder why that is:

A Colorado Springs municipal judge today jailed two anti-abortion activists after they refused to pay a fine for trespassing at the Focus on the Family headquarters.

Judge Spencer A. Gresham sentenced Kenneth Scott to 11 days in jail and Rev. Bob Enyart to nine days for their role in a Sept. 4 protest against Focus on the Family founder James Dobson’s decision to endorse GOP presidential candidate John McCain … During the trial, the defendants expressed frustration at not being able to raise anti-abortion issues or what they viewed as Dobson’s “broken pledge” in supporting McCain’s losing campaign against Barack Obama.

Prior to the sentencing, Lisa Anderson, a spokeswoman for Focus on the Family asked the judge to consider the organization’s concern over safety for its employees and visitors.

When both men refused to pay [fines, the judge] offered them the option of public service, which they also rejected.

“I refuse to do public service to a system that is killing babies,” Scott said.

Let this be a lesson to all right-wing protesters out there: if you protest President Obama and get arrested for trespassing, the Right will coming running to your defense – but if you protest James Dobson and get arrested for trespassing … well, you are on your own.