Thursday, June 27, 2013

Minutemen-- Liars, Rapists, Murderers, Nazis... And, Of Course, Republicans


3 American Nazis with a toxic agenda- Gilchrist, Simcox, Hannity

Last week David Vitter's viciously anti-immigrant amendment was defeated in the Senate, 58-36, with 7 Republicans rejecting it and only the most reactionary Democrat in the Senate-- Mark Pryor-- crossing the aisle and voting with Republican anti-immigrant extremists. Vitter's amendment was meant to slow down the temporary grant of legal status or adjustment to citizenship status of immigrants. John Cornyn's poison pill amendment suffered a similar fate two days later-- 54 senators voting to table it, only 43 backing it (just Manchin and Pryor among Democrats). When you hear respectable Senate Republicans-- not to mention less respectable ones like Ted Cruz and Chuck Grassley-- ranting about their Quixotic quest for “border security,” it’s a legacy of how the Minutemen changed the ground rules of the debate. And no one has covered that development better than David Neiwert, whose spectacular new book, And Hell Followed With Her: Crossing The Dark Side Of The American Border paints the definitive picture of what the Minutemen plague really consisted of, rather than the propaganda pumped out by political grifters like Tom Tancredo (R-CO), Tom DeLay (R-TX), John Culberson (R-TX), and Phil Gingrey (R-GA) and anti-immigrant media shills Lou Dobbs on CNN and Sean Hannity on Fox.

Right after Neiwert's book was released, Dobbs', Hannity's and Tancredo's close buddy, a founder of the Minuteman movement in Arizona, Chris Simcox, was arrested and jailed for raping a series of prepubescent girls. Hopefully Simcox will get what's coming to him in prison. Unfortunately Dobbs, Hannity and Tancredo are still free and still doing great damage, if not to 9 year old girls, then to Americans in general.
Chris Simcox, co-founder of the Minuteman border watch movement, was arrested Wednesday morning for allegedly having sexual contact with three young girls. Phoenix police booked Simcox on two counts of molestation of a child, two counts of sexual conduct with a minor, and one count of attempted molestation of a child.

Simcox, 52, co-founded the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, an armed volunteer group who assigned themselves the task of securing the southwest border. The group’s mission was to prevent “the unlawful and unauthorized entry of all individuals, contraband, and foreign military” in to the U.S.

Phoenix police spokesman Sgt. Tommy Thompson told Phoenix-based ABC 15 that authorities “developed probable cause to believe Simcox had sexual conduct with the girls, all under the age of ten.” ABC 15 reports Simcox has denied the allegations.

Before he founded the Minutemen, Simcox had a long history of working with children. In a 2006 USA Today profile, Simcox explained his first job was at a "a very bad high school in South Central L.A." Simcox then moved to work at a private elementary school where he taught kindergarten through third grade for 13 years before becoming a private tutor.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate-group activities, points out Simcox has been accused of child molestation before. His first ex-wife, Deborah Crews, accused him of pedophilia in 1998. "He tried to molest our daughter when he was intoxicated," Crews told the SPLC. "When she ran out, he tried to say he was just giving her a leg massage and she got the wrong idea.”
Dave's book begins with the story of one band of Minutemen who broke into homes to rob people, murdered a family in cold blood-- including a 9 year old girl-- and then loudly blamed it on Mexican immigrants. Not every Minuteman was a home invader, a murderer or a child rapist. But almost every one of them was a violent Nazi, KKK or militia militant. Heroes to the GOP, this was a group of murderous extremists, dangerous misfits and Glenn Beck-quoting racists who would have conversations like this, when, according to Neiwert's book, they didn't know informers were among them:
[Undercover journalist] Dave Holthouse listened as his fellow Minutemen explained their border philosophy: like Simcox’s old friend Craig Howard, they thought that a few well-placed rifle shots would solve the nation’s border problems.

“It should be legal to kill illegals,” said one of them, a sixty-nine-year old retired Special Forces veteran who fought in Vietnam. “Just shoot ‘em on sight. That’s my immigration policy recommendation. You break into my country, you die.”

His neo-Nazi compatriots nodded in assent. “I agree completely,” one of them said. “You get up there with a rifle and start shooting four or five of them a week, the other four or five thousand behind them are going to think twice about crossing that line.”
The locals down in the border area tended to not agree-- and to not support Simcox and his Nazi brigades. Border Patrol officials he interviewed told Holthouse that the Minutemen were "more hindrance than help because they so frequently called in false alarms and set off ground sensors."
“The Border Patrol didn’t want them, my community didn’t want them here, and I didn’t want them here,” said Ray Borane, the Douglas mayor who frequently crossed swords with Chris Simcox and the other border watchers. “All they succeeded in doing was creating hard feelings and spreading a racist message. The amount of media attention they received has been totally out of proportion to their actual impact. The Mexicans have a saying that I think applies quite well to the Minuteman Project: ‘It was all song and no opera.’”
Monday, just before the Senate started voting, Obama had a high visibility meeting with prominent businessmen who back immigration reform. He made the economic case for why reform would be helpful to the country. "All of these business leaders," he said, "recognize the degree to which immigration is a contributor to growth, a contributor to expansion, a creator of jobs, but they also recognize that the immigration system that we currently have is broken." He hit all the talking points:
We have a system in which we bring outstanding young people from all across the world to educate them here, and unfortunately, too often, we send them right back so that they can start companies or help to grow companies somewhere else instead of here.

We have a situation in which millions of individuals are in the shadow economy, oftentimes exploited at lower wages, and that hurts those companies that are following the rules, because they end up being at a disadvantage to some of these less scrupulous companies.

And so, all of us I think recognize that now is the time to get comprehensive immigration reform done -- one that involves having very strong border security; that makes sure that we're holding employers accountable to follow the rules; one that provides earned citizenship for those 11 million, so that they have to pay back taxes, pay a fine, learn English, follow the rules, get to the back of the line, but ultimately can be part of the above-board economy, as opposed to the low-board economy; and a system that fixes and cleans up our legal immigration system so that we can continue to be a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants.

The good news is, is that we've got a strong bipartisan bill that meets many of those principles. As I've said before, it's not a bill that represents everything that I would like to see; it represents a compromise. And I think all the business leaders here recognize that there are elements of it that they might want to tweak one way or another. But it does adhere to the core principles that we need for comprehensive immigration reform, and now is the time to do it.

Just this past week, the Congressional Budget Office noted that this would end up bringing more money into the federal government. It would reduce our deficits-- people would be paying taxes. It would end up strengthening our economy, growing our economy. And so you've got a broad consensus all throughout the country, not just business leaders who are represented here today-- many of whom are immigrants themselves, many of whom started businesses and are now creating opportunity all across the country-- but we're also seeing labor leaders, we're seeing clergy, we're seeing people from all different walks of life saying now is the time to get this done.
Monday afternoon, the Senate voted 67-27 (with several supporters stuck at airports and on planes) to move forward with the immigration bill by further militarizing the U.S.-Mexican border and screwing with immigrants in various and sundry ways-- Democrats giving in to dozens of petty Republican demands in return for their votes. (One was to confiscation billions of dollars paid into Social Security by undocumented workers.) The Republicans who voted YES were John McCain (AZ), Lindsey Graham (SC), Marco Rubio (FL), Jeff Flake (AZ)-- Gang of Eight members-- and Bob Corker (TN), Lamar Alexander (TN), Kelly Ayotte (NH), Jeff Chiesa (NJ), Susan Collins (ME), Orrin Hatch (UT), Dean Heller (NV), Mark Kirk (IL), John Hoeven (ND), Lisa Murkowski (AK) and Roger Wicker (MS).

And yesterday there was another Republican filibuster of the immigration reform bill. It was shot down 67-31, with every single Democrat plus 13 Republicanos voting to shut it down. That should be similar to the final vote, although Dems might persuade Chiesa (NJ) and Chambliss (GA) to cross the aisle as well and vote for reform. The Republicans who voted with the Democrats yesterday:
Lamar Alexander (TN)
Kelly Ayotte (NH)
Susan Collins (ME)
Bob Corker (TN)
Jeff Flake (AZ)
Lindsey Graham (SC)
Orrin Hatch (UT)
Dean Heller (NV)
John Hoeven (ND)
Mark Kirk (IL)
John McCain (AZ)
Lisa Murkowski (AK)
Marco Rubio (FL)

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At 8:49 AM, Anonymous wjbill49 said...

thanks for publishing stories like this! Perhaps a few more people will start seeing these violent criminals and sociopaths for what they are.

At 5:28 PM, Anonymous me said...

Immigration is a difficult issue for me. On the one hand, wages in this country are terrible. I believe that most of that is due to republicans (FEINSTEIN) both helping industries move offshore AND importing low-priced educated workers. But the large number of illegal immigrants can't be helping the situation either.

On the other hand, those people DO contribute to the economy and pay taxes. AND we have flaming lunatics and racists demonizing people (mainly Mexicans) for all the wrong reasons. I trust those kooks not at all.

I suspect that the biggest reason Mexico's economy is not so hot is because of political corruption (isn't that always the case? Just like here), and one big cause of the corruption is OUR drug war.

So I really don't know what to think about the immigration issue. I don't consider it a simple problem that's amenable to bumper-sticker solutions, yet that's what both sides are giving us, because that's what gets people excited and drives up donations.

What a mess.


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