Alan Keyes was one of 22 anti-abortion protesters who were arrested today on the campus of Notre Dame University:
Former Illinois U.S. Senate candidate Alan Keyes and 21 other protesters were arrested this morning when they refused to leave the Notre Dame campus during a protest of President Obama’s upcoming commencement address there, authorities said.
Keyes and the others were arrested on trespassing charges when they refused to leave campus, a university spokesman said. All 22 were being held in the St. Joseph County Jail on misdemeanor criminal trespass charges, in lieu of $250 bond each, said St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Sgt. Bill Redman.
Keyes was among a group of 26 [sic] protesters, some of them pushing baby carriages with dolls covered in fake blood, who entered the campus and were greeted by Notre Dame police, said university spokesman Dennis Brown.
The protesters had “publicized their intentions in advance,” and were handed notices advising them that university policy bans protests unless they are organized by student groups and approved in advance, Brown said.
University policy is to arrest anyone who refuses to leave campus after being notified of the policy, and Keyes and other protesters who stayed were arrested about 12:15 p.m. Eastern Time, he said.
Keyes, channeling Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote what he apparently views as his own “Letter From a Birmingham Jail.” (Hat tip, Alex Koppelman.) Here is a sampling:
With the arrest of Randall Terry, Father Jenkins and the University administration at Notre Dame take their advocacy of evil to a new level of spiritual atrocity.
In a little less than two weeks they will welcome to the university campus a man who represents the most abominable and extreme commitment ever known in US politics to destroying the God given right to life of innocent human offspring. With their actions and the “honor” they confer upon Obama, they will actively promote the lie that it is possible to dishonor God blatantly and unashamedly, yet be somehow “honorable” in the eyes of those who profess faith in Jesus Christ.
31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. (Matthew 25:31-40)
These words must ring in the ears of faithful Christians as they consider the grim reality of abortion. Every time abortionists rip a child limb from limb within the womb; every time they crush the fragile head; every time they scorch the life from its body with a death dealing solution; every time they scrape its nascent cells of life from the walls of a womb- Jesus is savagely beaten again; his skull pressed down with thorns; his limbs pulled savagely in their sockets; his hands and feet pierced through with nails; his breath drawn with fiery pain; his life finally extinguished; every time.
I wonder if Alan Keyes also believes that Jesus is brutally tortured to death again every time a human being created in God’s image is tortured. I wonder if he knows that is one reason that many self-identified Christians oppose torture.
As far as I can tell, no one else writing about this has pointed out the sad irony of Alan Keyes — a man who rejected his own daughter when she came out as gay in 2005 — writing panegyrics to “innocent human offspring.”
Here is part of a New York Times op-ed from the time, written by Dan Savage:
Alan Keyes is the Republican who moved to Illinois last year to run against Barack Obama for the United States Senate. To describe Mr. Keyes as an opponent of gay rights is putting it mildly: during his campaign Mr. Keyes described homosexuality as “selfish hedonism.” When asked if he thought Mary Cheney, the lesbian daughter of Vice President Dick Cheney, was a selfish hedonist, he replied, “Of course she is.”
Learning that a prominent conservative like Mr. Keyes (or Randall Terry, the anti-abortion-turned-antigay-rights crusader whose son revealed last spring he is gay) has a gay relative is nothing new. Newt Gingrich, for instance, has a lesbian half-sister. But for gays and lesbians there’s something particularly satisfying about watching a prominent antigay conservative learn that his or her own child is homosexual. It smacks of cosmic retribution: Mr. Keyes now has to choose between his antigay “pro-family” rhetoric and a member of his own family.
Sadly for Maya Keyes, her father apparently has more affection for his ideology than for his daughter. She says her parents kicked her out of the house and have refused to pay for her education. (Thankfully, some of those evil gay people have come forward to pay her tuition at Brown next year through the Point Foundation.) Perhaps Mr. and Mrs. Cheney could find the time to call Mr. and Mrs. Keyes and explain how parents who actually value their families react when they learn one of their children is gay.
But I can’t enjoy this news about Maya Keyes as much as most gays and lesbians. As a parent, you see, I feel Alan Keyes’s pain – and Randall Terry’s too. I can empathize with their desire not to see their children grow up to be one of us because I live in mortal fear of my child growing up to be one of them.