The Vigilante You Know is Better Than the Vigilante You Don’tMar 24th, 2010 | By Michel Marizco | Category: General News, Immigration, Politics
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THE BORDER REPORT
The Minuteman Civil Defense Corps is no more. The Arizona Daily Star’s got the scoop on the story here. But there’s another armed group floating around down on the border (I mean, besides the Sinaloans). Federal agents have received complaints from hunters in Southern Arizona of being accosted by armed white men in camouflage who told the hunters they are with the Department of Homeland Security, sources say. They weren’t affiliated with the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, but law enforcement doesn’t know yet who is driving this group, what their members are like, and what their motives are.
After the hunter incident last month, sources say the U.S. Border Patrol confronted the group: “They interviewed them, they denied everything, of course,” my source says. “But yeah, those bastards are out there now.” The incident was reported in Arizona’s Pima County, down towards Sierrita Mountain Road off Ajo Way.
This makes me wonder what’s been happening with the vigilante groups along the Mexican border lately. And the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps sudden disbanding also makes me curious.
Last week, Mercer sent out an email inviting … whomever …. to come down to the border “locked and loaded,” ready to stop every single person they encountered.
“We will forcefully engage, detain, and defend our lives and country from the criminals who trample over our culture and laws,” were her exact words.
This week, she tells the Arizona Daily Star: “People are ready to come lock and loaded and that’s not what we are all about. It only takes one bad apple to destroy everything we’ve done for the last eight years.”
Basically, Mercer incited a riot, encouraging people to bring rifles, hunt illegal migrants down and confront drug traffickers. Then, when the responses raged in, 350 according to the paper, she says she didn’t want people to get the wrong idea?
Is it a contradictory statement or did some … special … volunteers inform them they were coming down and the Minuteman people want no part of it?
The Minuteman Civil Defense Corps changed over the years, growing steadily less clumsy, then more aggressive, culminating in a double murder a year ago by one of its supporters.
A few years ago, the group had just evolved from a local trio of Cochise County natives to a national call to arms by its then-leader, Chris Simcox.
They were funny more than scary then, senior citizens with lawn chairs and sun parasols. One older woman carried an even older .44 revolver in her shaking hands. She used to sit on Border Road south of Bisbee Junction, watching across the barb wire border into the swaying green grasses on the Mexico side. Made a really good lemonade, too, if I recall.
Then there were the idiots. One night, and I’m going back a few years here, maybe 2005; the group had set up along a highway in southern Arizona, near the town of Palominas. About ten miles up from that encampment, is a winding road abutting Coronado National Monument, Black Canyon Road. Must have been about 10 p.m., and I was driving up because I’d heard there was a group of them setting up a “surveillance” camp on the hill. The trip was a bust so I came back down and lo and behold, a group of them had set their pickup trucks along the road exit back onto the highway. I slammed on my brakes, nearly crashing into them.
Those poor bastards, they were on the lookout for cars filled with Mexican nationals heading north. They weren’t expecting someone coming up behind them.
I was more than a little pissed; mostly because they were blocking the road. Climbed out of my truck to challenge them, one guy was standing just inside his driver side door, facing in, not turning around to talk to me.
“What’re you doing?”
“Where’d you come from?! Who are you?” one of the men yelled in the dark.
“Well who are you and why are you blocking the road?” (it helps to have reporter credentials for these things).
“We’re just watching the road, minding our own business.”
I’ll be the first to admit, sometimes stupid gets a good grip on me.
“Yeah, what you got in your hands?” He kept his hands hidden in the cab of the truck.”I don’t have anything,” he says.
“Aw, you got something.” I knew what it was of course. The poor dumb bastard had freaked out when a truck came up unexpectedly in the dark. He was probably a Mid-Westerner using his vacation time to support the Minutemen. So he did what anyone might have done, he pulled a gun on me then tucked it away. I could see it now, sitting on the floorboard of his Ford Ranger. He wasn’t going to shoot anybody, just scared. Which, I guess, is the last person you want holding a gun.
The Minuteman leaders were furious, saying I was stalking their volunteers and trying to incite a shooting. Sure I was. Because nothing would be more satisfying than getting shot in the dark by a restrictionist whackjob. Right.
Fast forward a few years, the media lost interest; and the game changed.
Now I started seeing men wearing camouflage, cruising up and down Highway 286 and Arivaca Road. These weren’t senior citizens anymore. These were young guys in their twenties and thirties, acting like big-game hunters for all the world to see. The agreement with law enforcement was that they’d stay on the main roads, not interfere with the U.S. Border Patrol and keep weapons down to the necessary self-defense minimum, handguns only, no rifles or shotguns.
Fast forward to 2009, and now we had Minuteman Project supporters accused of going out and pulling home invasions and shooting nine-year-old kids, acting like the Sinaloan ripoff crews they claimed to revile.
Mercer said she received 350 emails from people wanting to do exactly what she had asked them to do: bring more powerful guns down to the border and hunt people along the line.
Suddenly, she backed off.
Who’s coming down to the border this weekend?
And who is this second group, accosting American citizens and Mexican nationals, alike?