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Being a Self-Righteous Pain is Not a Crime

Michelle Renay Sutherland, a New Yorker who traveled to Richmond to demonstrate in support of Virginia’s passage of the Equal Rights Amendment, is an annoying individual. Frankly, I find her sanctimonious posturing to be a pain in the ass.

Maybe she violated the law for baring her breast when posing as the goddess Virtue in a reenactment of the Virginia state seal, maybe not. But her actions are hardly grounds for holding her in jail without bail for a month.

A magistrate set a bail of $700 for Sutherland, a Brooklyn artist with no criminal record. But General District Court Judge Lawrence B. Cann III ordered her held without bond until her trial, scheduled for March 21.

An article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch [1] does not quote Cann as providing any justification for refusing to release Sutherland.

Now the woman is becoming a martyr for the ERA cause. Said Kati Hornung with VAratifyERA: “The judge overstepped the boundaries of reasonableness, perhaps to make an example of Ms. Sutherland. This is part of the reason why we need the ERA because the system is so male centric and they don’t know what to do with women who challenge their authority by using their First Amendment protected rights. We hear Ms. Sutherland is in good spirits and talking with women in the mail about the Equal Rights Amendment.”

For God’s sake, let the woman out of jail. It’s a free country. Her “crime,” if it is determined to be one, is only a misdemeanor, and her posing as Virtue was a form of political expression. The Left in this country has a well-earned reputation for intolerance. The Right should not seek to emulate it.

Update: The judge reversed his decision [2].