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It took a Jefferson County jury only 30 minutes to convict 12 anti-war protesters of tresspassing and obstruction for blocking the entrance to a military recruiting center.
The No Blood for Oil 12 were arrested Nov. 18 after police said they ignored repeated orders to move to a public sidewalk. All were charged with obstructing a passageway and third-degree trespass, which could carry sanctions of up to six months in jail.
I wasn’t at the trial, but according to the news report, the prosecutor used this argument in closing:
Deputy District Attorney Ben Sollars chastised the defendants for comparing themselves to Rosa Parks, the mother of the civil rights movement. “How dare they compare themselves to Rosa Parks. Rosa Parks disagreed with segregation laws and so she broke them,” he said. “These 12 defendants disagree with the war … so they violated obstruction and trespass laws.”
I don’t get his argument. Rosa Parks thought segregation laws were wrong and broke them. The anti-war protesters, believing the war to be illegal and immoral, also acted unlawfully. Why is one acceptable to the prosecutor while the other is not?