WASHINGTON--While arguments for and against the Communications Decency Act raged inside the Supreme Court building, outside, in a driving sleet storm, a handful of anti-CDA protesters were being shouted down by a larger group protesting in favor of the legislation.
The CDA drew a small number of protesters from both sides of the case. CDA supporters outnumbered opponents by perhaps 30 to 10, each group clustered to one side of the steps leading into the Supreme Court building.
The CDA advocates, some of whom brought small children waving anti-pornography posters, carried signs and a banner that said "Enough is Enough."
It wasn't all they were saying.
Lara Lauchheimer, who came from New Jersey to protest against the CDA, said that since she began protesting at 9 a.m. ET, "I've had three or four people tell me I'm a product of the devil."
Lauchheimer said that while "no one argues that children should see pornography on the Internet," her concerns with the CDA centered on the potential that adults would lose the right to free speech.
The smaller group of anti-CDA protesters tried unsuccessfully to drag passers-by into joining them.
One group of CDA proponents was the Pure Love Alliance, a pro-abstinence group that performed a skit. Its central character was played by Ken Yamamoto, of Maryland, who was plastered head to toe in magazine advertisements, wore a circuit board and a bow and arrow around his neck, had plastic angel wings on his back and was covered in plastic wrap. The get-up was meant to symbolize the unfiltered pop culture information available on the Internet.
As part of the skit, Yamamoto's character 'shot' a child with the bow and arrow, to show the danger of the Net.
"The Internet has a lot of power, but this power can be abused," Yamamoto said. He said he was there to protest because safe-sex information is freely available on the Net.