Like many Donald Trump supporters who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, Dona Sue Bissey has promoted the QAnon conspiracy theory on social media. But the judge sentencing her Tuesday to 14 days in jail said it was for her actions, not her beliefs.Update: A comment points out that I did not explain why she should be considered a political prisoner.
Bissey, 53, pleaded guilty in July to parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building, a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum of six months' imprisonment. ...
Justice Department prosecutor Joshua Rothstein said Bissey appears to be an avid consumer of other conspiracy theories, including that the coronavirus is a "hoax pandemic" and that the COVID-19 vaccine is part of a Jewish plot to murder people. She also appeared to believe the pandemic was foreshadowed by "predictive programming" during the opening ceremony for the 2012 Olympics in London. ...
Bissey was jailed for two days after her arrest in February. In a letter to the judge, Bissey said some of her neighbors in Bloomfield, Indiana, have shunned her since the riot. She called herself a "God fearing, country loving, law abiding, hard working patriot."
"I am not and never have been a violent individual," she wrote.
Some QAnon-linked defendants face significant prison time. Sentencing guidelines for Arizona resident Jacob Chansley, the "QAnon Shaman," who pleaded guilty to a felony, could call for a prison term ranging from 41 to 51 months, according to a prosecutor.
She may have committed trespassing, or some other minor act of civil disobedience, but we do not normally treat political protesters harshly, and we condemn other countries that do.
For example, here was another DC protest this week:
Demonstrators with climate change-focused protest groups turned out around the District Thursday, with large banners and fake oil, as part of ongoing protests against a perceived lack of action on the issue of climate change.This was almost as many arrests as Jan. 6, but I bet that none of them get held without bail or charged with serious crimes. The DoJ will probably drop the charges on all of them.
The Extinction Rebellion protest is one of many in a weeklong string of climate protests that have led to more than 300 arrests so far this week. ...
Similar protests were held at government buildings around D.C., including the Department of the Interior.
An Interior Department spokeswoman said a group of protesters rushed the lobby, injuring at least one security officer who was taken to a nearby hospital. Police and protesters clashed outside the building, and a spokesperson for the protest group accused officers of using stun guns against several unarmed protesters.
Here is another political prosecution. Jason Kessler's worst offense appears to be that he once said, “Our entire country would be better off if the South had won the Civil War.” I disagree, but he has a right to his opinion.