Skip to comments.Embedded Reporter (KFYI-Phoenix) Provided Firsthand Reports from Minuteman Project
Posted on 04/06/2005 2:21:30 PM PDT by Spiff
Friday April 1, 2005
I arrived in Tombstone late morning...A beautiful day though there was a cold breeze blowing...I've never been to Tombstone, but the tiny town seems a little overwhelmed with both the Minutemen and an Arizona Motorcycle Rally. The media have taken over most of the street in front of Schiefflen Hall....satellite trucks, news vehicles, photographers and reporters are gathered in front of the historic hall hoping to get access to Chris Simcox or Jim Gilchrist, the co-founders of the Minuteman Project. In just a couple hours, the hall will fill with volunteers anxiously awaiting their marching orders for the next 30 days. Because of an ongoing professional relationship with the two men, I am granted exclusive access inside the hall to setup and talk with organizers. I find out that the two men seemed pleased overall with the operation, though, Chris Simcox did mention there were a few, "bumps". While I wait for the event to begin I do a live interview with KOA Radio's Mike Rosen..the interview lasts 40 minutes.
The Schiefflen Hall was surely grand for it's day...the brick and wood building stands tall, it's lobby is open with large plate glass windows to the front...inside are hardwood floors with a stage at the front, a small balcony above. There are long wooden benches set symmetrically on either side, reminiscent of a traditional church. It seats only 150 and is bright white in color, inside and out.
The very first orientation is about ten minutes late getting started....it fills rapidly with men, women and young people from all over the country. There are about 12 different media people inside, though I'm the ONLY radio reporter allowed inside. The room is filled to capacity.
Jim Gilchrist kicks off the orientation (see pictures), he introduces Bay Buchanan (I honestly do not know who she is)...she introduces author Frosty Wooldridge who introduces the secret keynote speaker, Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo (An outspoken advocate for tighter border control)....soon, Arizona's own Russell Pearce is invited to speak....throughout all of the speeches, there's thunderous applause, feet stomping on the wooden floor and chants of support.
While the speeches continue you can hear, faintly, the sounds of pots and pans being pounded outside...I later find out it's a group of protesters who have setup shop in front of the hall complete with colorful Native American dancers and various young people holding signs with phrases like, "Being Human is not Illegal", "The Minutemen are Racist", and, "The Minutemen Must Be Stopped". There were no speeches from the group, just annoying noise! I still got some on tape. Oh, and by the way....I didn't see one Hispanic/ Mexican American in the group...take that for what it's worth.
About 45 minutes later everyone is excused to make room for the next group of volunteers..this process will repeat a total of three times today. There's a press conference set for 4 PM, but, I got all the tape I need....so, I head back to my quarters at the Miracle Valley Bible College south of Sierra Vista. After I arrive, I get a bite to eat in the college cafeteria, Salisbury Steak, Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans.....I look over my scripts, listen to some interviews and hit the sack - literally (see pictures), it's 11:45PM....tomorrow, one of our fine producers, Mark Talercio, is coming down to help me with the protests in Douglas and Naco. This could get very interesting.....
I am always fascinated by border issues...coming from Colorado, I didn't really have to worry about it. Now, I seem entrenched in it! I will be staying at the Miracle Valley Bible College Dormitory in Hereford, Arizona - just a couple miles from the US/Mexico Border. This will be the communications base for the Minuteman Project.
I first met Minuteman co-founder, Jim Gilchrist, near his hometown of Aliso Viejo, California. I remember the day well....I had just covered the Academy Award's Nominations in Beverly Hills, and then the tragic derailment/pileup of a commuter train in south LA....Mr. Gilchrist and I met at a Starbucks near Aliso Viejo where we talked for about two hours. I found Mr. Gilchrist to be very passionate about his beliefs...he spoke about his mother, who'd been turned down for a low income home because officials told him illegal immigrants had rented all of them in the neighborhood.....He told me he was forced to put her in a nursing home where she died 48 hours later. He said he had also been in an auto accident in southern California which involved an illegal immigrant who had no insurance. He said it was getting time to 'step up' and do something about the influx of illegal immigrants.
Enter Chris Simcox.....Simcox is the owner/pubisher of the Tombstone Tumbleweed and founder of the Civil Homeland Defense volunteer group. Simcox and Gilchrist met and decided, in their words, to show the federal government that citizens can step up to the plate by staging an event that would draw national and international attention. They said they wanted to "peacefully" protest the lack of funding for the border patrol, and the government's failure to properly secure the border.....from there..the Minuteman Project was born.
In a very modest grassroots effort, the Minuteman Project email went out to a few supporters and quickly spread around the nation....to date, they had to stop taking applications for volunteers when it reached 1,300. It seems to be a highly sophisticated effort with pilots donating aircraft and former security professionals donating communications equipment.
Men, women and children from almost every state in the nation will live in RV's, hotels, motels, tents and campers for the entire month of April. They will rotate shifts.....three 8 hour observation shifts every day. Jim Gilchrist said it basically amounts to a bunch of people sitting on lawn chairs with binoculars...if anyone sees suspicious behavior, they are to call the border patrol. And according to the Minuteman operations manual, there is a no contact policy. Those who wish to bring guns are welcome under the constitution, except long arm rifles. I'm told there will be a number of retired law enforcement on hand to act as security.
A number of groups are protesting the presence of the Minuteman Project claiming a vigilante mentality, human rights groups are condeming their actions, and recent rumors of a South American gang targeting the effort have not deterred the volunteers from showing up.
This should be one of the most interesting assignments of my 25 year radio career.
Battle for the Border
Saturday April 2, 2005
I'm up at 6:15 preparing for my live interview with KFYI's Ken Voight... I didn't sleep well at all... couldn't be the vintage WWII cot and springs....anyway, I make my way outside to the KFYI news truck..there's not much privacy inside the Bible College Dorm Rooms. Stupid me, I'm in shorts and sandals with a short-sleeved shirt and no coat....what a dumbass I am! It was freaking cold...anyway, I spend some time on air with Ken...and as soon as that's over, I get ready for my next live interview with John Emm from KOA Radio in Denver.....I spend ten minutes with him and his co-host Kim....everyone wants to know about the violence...the patrols haven't even started yet...oh well.
I head back inside and get more of my gear organized.....It's about 7:30AM.... I get a call from Mark Talercio, who does some field producing for me...he's just heading out of Phoenix on his way to Sierra Vista where we'll meet....I can't wait to show him the room he's about to sleep in (lol).....I decide to be brave and try the showers .....I have to say, for all of the cosmetic, and potentially life threatening bacteria, it has good, strong hot water! While I'm in the shower, I overhear some men talk about their experiences thus far....they casually speak about their newfound disdain for President Bush...one saying he was a huge Bush supporter until he got here and saw this rampant illegal alien problem...another said he was a lifetime voting Republican...now, he's afraid he's going to have to switch party lines.....you can tell by their vernacular, their demeanor, and their tatoos, that they're vets...through and through. They feel, to some measure, this allows them a certain freedom to say whatever they want, wherever they want, whenever they want....afterall, they are with their own kind for the next 30 days.
I head over to the cafeteria for breakfast...for me, it's biscuits and gravy, with eggs and ham....I sit and do some work on my laptop when a gentleman approaches with his hand extended...he introduces himself as Jay Lawrence, a reporter from our sister station KFI in Los Angeles...Prior to our arrival, I'd been speaking with Jay via phone to exchange contacts and strategies....he said his station rented him an RV to drive and live in......I think of the two of us, he got the better deal (lol).....we swapped story ideas and gameplans....I finished breakfast and Mark Talercio called on my cell telling me he was just coming in to Sierra Vista...so, I headed up to meet him. I couldn't wait to show him his room for the next two nights.....Mark and I arrive back at the Bible College, check him in and head over to the room....For the next 10 minutes, his jaw is in the dropped open position...I remember him saying, "This is so much worse than I ever imagined".....we step inside the lobby of the dormitory, I head to the little boy's room...he heads to our room...#11 ...I could hear him laughing out loud from the bathroom.....when I got back, he was red-faced, in tears and laughing hysterically.
We finally settle in and get ready to head to Douglas, the site of the Minuteman Protest in front of Border Patrol Headquarters.....Jay Lawrence headed down earlier and called to tell me police are staged along the highway pulling people over right and left...so, be careful. As Mark and I pull up to the Border Patrol Headquarters we see a wave of flags...representing everything from statehood to military affiliation....The Headquarters was in what appeared to be a lockdown status...agents were parked out front, some in riot gear.....we park and walk up to the largest concentration of people where we meet a group of young people in white t-shirts with the words, "Legal Observer".....we attempt to interview a man and woman about their purpose here..the young woman silently shakes her head no..the man begins a rehearsed statement...I say, "Whoa...wait a minute...let me start recording....." I then ask him why they're here...he responds, "I'm not going too much into this but, we are here to protect the rights of humans...etc, etc". I kept pushing for a better response to my question, and wondering more about the whole 'legal observer' thing.....I asked him, "If you're the legal observers, does that make the Minutemen illegal observers?" He didn't quite know how to respond to that. We were recording some nat sound (short for natural sound -- the chants, car noise, etc.)...when all of the sudden, organizer Jim Gilchrist arrived, walking along the road carrying an American flag.....people flock to him like a rock star.....a reporter from Mexico City begins interviewing him....I stand off to the side and wait for my turn to speak with him.....when appropriate, I begin my line of questioning.....I ask about current number of volunteers, how he felt when he pulled up and saw support for his cause, and whether or not he felt it was a coincidence that Department of Homeland Security announced the addition of 500+ agents to this area of the border, and began construction of a border wall, 2 days before the Minuteman Project began....he quickly replied, "We take credit for that".....(Side Note: The same question was posed to US Border Commissioner Robert Bonner in Tucson...he replied that this was in the works long before he'd even heard of the Minuteman Project).
We finally jump in the truck and head back to base, or as we've nicknamed it, Camp Minuteman....I work up the tape (radio vernacular for editing what you've recorded)....I mix it together to create the type of :35 story you hear daily on KFYI.....I attempt to email it via my cellphone/laptop setup..but, I run into a few glitches (nothing EVER works like it's supposed too)....I'm able to feed one story by email, the other by wireless Matrix (A fancy gadget that makes a cellular signal sound more like broadcast quality). It's tough to get a strong cell signal from here....I'm still negotiating the use of a land line inside the communications center....my original deal fell through after there was a security breech on the campus...at one point, they wouldn't even let the county sheriff on site. Now, I'm sort of technologically stuck. Honestly, I'm not sure what's so secret about the comm center...even the feds let me inside their comm center at every Border Patrol Headquarters....The makeshift comm center is at the end of the dorm where I'm staying....they've erected 4 medium sized antennas and 1 larger antenna outside of the dorm....apparently they're communicating via shortwave and ham radio. They had to tear it down and rebuild it three times.....Thanks to the efforts of KFYI anchor Joe Adams, I have a digital scanner programmed for all of the emergency channels, shortwave and ham frequencies. I hope to use the landline soon...otherwise, I'll have to drive 30 miles for another phone line.
Mark and I set out for Tombstone to get dinner...We eat at the Longhorn Saloon....then, head back to Camp Minuteman.....Mark is still so disgusted over the mattress, he opts for the back of the KFYI news blazer to get some sleep...Having been in stranger situations than this, I'm ok with my mattress....we finally settle in for the night.....we're told tomorrow we may be able to go on a patrol.
Sunday April 3, 2005
I'm up at around 8 ......I slept much better last night.....I head to the showers.....I come back to my room and get ready to go back to the shower room to brush my teeth when I notice a sign on the door that says 'girls only'.....this was a major change in a very short amount of time....I find out a woman was fed up with her shower/bathroom conditions and decided to arbitrarily change the gender of the shower rooms...as you can imagine, this didn't settle well with the men, who outnumber the women, 5 to 1.....thank God I already showered! By now, Mark is up and reveals he had a great night's sleep in the back of a KFYI News vehicle (see explanation in day two's entry)......Anyway, we head to the chow hall for breakfast and run in to Jim Gilchrist....I ask if we could go along on a training mission today...he says, "Sure, meet me at 11:30 in the dorm lobby". Mark and I finish breakfast and figure out the game plan for the day.
We meet Jim in the lobby. He's concerned about the trash building up in the dorm...he's looking for volunteers to handle the disposal of trash bags.....we then head outside to his car when he stops, turns around and says, "You know Steve, we couldn't have done this without the support of the media and reporters like you....thank you". I simply reply, "I just tell it like I see it..." Mark and I jump into the KFYI jeep and follow Jim to another location further down from Camp Minuteman, a small diner who's owner is a former Marine and supports the Minuteman effort. We meet up with Chris Simcox who is organizing the ground patrols. There are other media on hand, a Tucson TV crew, a Christian Science Monitor reporter, and a reporter/photographer from a southern California newspaper. We gather around a tree where Chris and about 20 volunteers huddle together for instructions...this will be there last training session before they go 'solo' on the border....Chris explains that it will be hot, windy and dusty...then, he reiterates his final point, "What's the most important self defense tool you've got?" A woman replies, "Your camcorder".......Chris encourages every team to take along a camcorder to record every potentially damaging engagement...he says this is to protect and prove what others are falsely claiming.
Sgt. Bob is handling ground ops...he puts everyone into groups of 4 to 5....he barks orders just like he was in the military again...the volunteers obey every command.....we then get into our cars and start a caravan on highway 92 to Naco. We get to Naco highway and hang a right, head south and begin our journey through a maze of dirt roads and residential areas...eventually coming out into a wide open area where the only barrier between us and Mexico is the tiny barbed wire held up by branches.....the road is very rough, washboarded from the torrential rains and winds. The poor KFYI blazer is rattling and shaking like the space shuttle on re-entry.....pieces of the dash board and door fall off inside.....our poor 1996 Chevy Blazer is on its last leg.....We finally spot a bright blue tent with about 6 people...the caravan stops...Jim and Chris get out to greet the men and women and check on their progress....a team from the rear of the caravan relieves this group...we move on east along the dirt road - with the border about 20 feet to our right. We continue relieving teams until we get to the last observation post...this one has only 2 men, dressed in fatigues with bulletproof vests....A camera crew is interviewing the men (I find out they're from CMT - Country Music Television)....when we pull up, I get a thumbs up from the guys...they're fans of KFYI. One of the men is Sean Pearce (Russell Pearce's son)...he says he believes in the cause and something has to be done now to protect our borders...I asked how his recovery was going...he said he was almost ready for full duty at the Maricopa County Sheriff's Department....side note: (Sean, and his partner, were shot a few months ago while serving a warrant in the East Valley....Sean was hit in the abdomen, his partner in his side....it was presumed the shooter was an illegal alien).....I wished the men well and Mark and I turned around and headed back.
Along the way, we stopped to talk to some of the volunteers.....we met a man from northern Idaho who's a volunteer fireman...he says they have border issues with Canada and it's mostly drugs....he hopes the Minutemen can come up north in the future....one of his teammates is from Houston Texas.....he's retired from the Coast Guard...he explains to me the similarities between this effort and those he endured near international waters....just then, a woman pipes up that this rampant problem has got to be solved, and that President Bush has let us all down! We get back in the jeep and head down the road when Mark spots a Mexican National riding a horse along the fence....I say, "STOP"...so Mark slams on the brakes, throws it in reverse and heads back to where the man is...Mark honks the horn and the man stops....I get my tape deck, jump out and tell the man hello in Spanish...he responds...now, keep in mind I am nowhere close to being fluent in Spanish so, I just try my best to engage this man in a conversation....I'm able to fumble my way through asking him if he works on a ranch near here...he does....I tell him I'm with the press....he nods his head.....I try to animate and say key words to get him to respond to whether or not the Minuteman Project is a good thing.....I basically point to all of the tents and cars and ask him whether this is good...he says no....he starts to speak pretty fast and the best I can make out is that he doesn't see many problems along this stretch of the border, and that he lives nearby and nobody bothers him...I thank him...he says thanks and waves.
We head back to Camp Minuteman....upon arrival, I ask Mark to pull up to the Admin building...I want to find out about this shower room thing, and if I'm ever going to get access to a phone line.....Mark waits in the jeep.....I happen to stumble upon a meeting in which they were discussing the very same issue.....I find out a man bugged out earlier this morning over the shower room incident...honestly, this doesn't seem very organized...I know this is tough when you've got volunteers...but, my experience in covering events like this (especially those with volunteers)....there's more chiefs than indians (to coin a phrase)...they say they are working on it and should have it solved within the hour...I tell them that I am considering moving to a motel in Sierra Vista....I really need a phone line and consistent facilities....I'm not really the diva type....I just need reliable accommodations......I have a great deal of work to do, after all, you're counting on me to tell you the story. Mark has to head back to Phoenix.....he's got one of the KFYI News vehicles and he's got to be in early Monday to prep for the Joe Crummy show....so, Mark heads out and I head inside to my room to get started on editing all of this great audio I recorded today....I decide to take a break and go get dinner in the chow hall....I take my laptop and hope to do some work while I eat.....I'm not sitting 5 minutes when a couple women come over to listen to the interview with the Mexican National...they are amazed at the technology for radio.....a couple minutes later, Jim Gilchrist comes in and sits with us....while he eats his dinner, he listens to the audio I captured during the day....a few minutes later, a man comes in to tell Jim they need him in the Comm Center.......just then, Jay Lawrence comes in (my colleague from KFI Los Angeles)....we catch up on the days events....he wants to know about a report of a team of Minutemen spotting a cache of drugs during a patrol...he can't seem to get the answer...we'll check on it later. We swap audio and come up with a strategy for Monday....we hook up with a guy from Phoenix (also a KFYI fan) who wants to take us on a night patrol, complete with infrared and high-sensitive sound equipment. We agree on Monday night around 8.
I pack up and head to my room to finish up editing......someone knocks at the door...it's Will, the camp liaison...he informs me the head of the Comm Center will accommodate my phone line request and that the shower room is again the men's.....All seems right in the world. I go to the Comm Center and tap into the phone jack...it's a slower speed but, works fine....I feed my reports and thank them profusely for working with me...I head back to the room and crash....my first live interview tomorrow morning is at 4:10.....the time now is 11:52 PM. Good night!!!!
PLEASE NOTE: DUE TO TECHNICAL GLITCHES, I'M UNABLE TO UPLOAD PICTURES. I'LL GET THEM UP WHEN I GET BACK TO PHOENIX
Monday April 4, 2005
I'm up by 4AM preparing for my first 'live hit' or interview with some Clear Channel affiliates across the country...my first...Waco, Texas -- the home of my friend, Garret Schlesinger...Garret used to work at KFYI as a producer...he's now a program director and hosting his own morning show....next, WFLA in Florida..then, WRVA West Virginia....on to KOA Denver..then, a Canadian Television Network out of Toronto....I also went on with KFYI's Ken Voight who's filling in for Bruce Jacobs....I then head back to my room and sleep for a little while......my phone started ringing a couple hours later...more stations who need some reports tonight and tomorrow morning.....I head over to the chow hall for breakfast..I take my laptop to do some work.....my colleague Jay Lawrence from KFI, Los Angeles joins me...we strike up a conversation with some guys from Colorado...we find out they had just come in from one of the most notorious drug run areas along the border..they seemed scared...and also upset...they feel like they were never warned about the area and prepared for the types of characters who literally live in the mountainside....guards for drug traffickers. They tell us about a man they met who owns a ranch...apparently, the man lectured them on how stupid they were for coming up to that area with nothing more than a 'pop gun' (handgun)....The men are older, both Vietnam Vets and comfortable with weapons..but, these guys said they felt the hair on the back of their necks stand straight up! I ask them if I can interview them later..they agree.....I go back and take a quick shower...I then try to get this online picture thing figured out....I've taken some great pics but, I'm having a tough time uploading them for the blog....this laptop isn't equipped for software to change the size of the photos to make them more manageable for the web...so, the file sizes are too large.....we have to keep this laptop's hard drive free to accommodate the special audio software we use for mixing and sending audio.
I call our sharp I/T guy, Kevin Nitsche...he's working with me to get some pics online....it's tough to email them as the phoneline here is VERY slow and would literally take an hour to upload one large picture file.....(An example....it took me 43 minutes the other night to email a :38 second news story - almost 1 minute per second)....If I can't get them online from here....I'll load them when I get back to Phoenix this week. I am able to log on to my email where there's 135 emails waiting....it takes me close to an hour to take care of those....even though I'm here this week, I still have a 2 hour show to prepare for this Saturday night.....I finally get caught up on emails, voicemails and pages....it's time to put some oil in the news blazer so, I head out to find a gas station.....I drive this thing pretty hard...I take it to LA, Vegas, and any other assignment regardless of geography....this is probably why it's falling apart. Anyway, I head back to the college.
I meet up with the Minutemen from Colorado..they have a couple guys with them from California...one of them hands me a micro-cassette player to listen to...on it, a personal account of spotting a 150 pound brown bear in the Coconino National Forest earlier that day..then, an interview with woman who was walking her dogs along a stretch of road near the border....the tape is hard to hear because of the high wind noise...but, I'm able to hear the woman explain how hard it is for her to live in the area...she's been there for years and in the last 6 years it's gotten worse...her dogs bark every night because of all of the activity...she wears a bandana to prevent her identity being exposed to the drug cartel...if they see her talking with anyone, especially the law or media, they will retaliate by killing or torturing her dogs, or worse, burn her house down. There's a code of silence that surrounds the area...landowners are intimidated into submission buy the violent drug cartel. I dub the audio to my recorder for use in news stories.
By now, it's time for another live interview...this time, KFBK in Sacramento, CA.....and WRVA in West Virginia......It's funny that most everyone starts each interview with phrases like, "So Steve...you're embedded with a group of vigilantes along the border?" Or, "Hello Steve, tell us what it's like being with the Minutemen Militia" It's no wonder people never trust the media....I assure you, there's no evidence (at least from what I can tell) that there's a militia here...sure, there's a few people with guns..but, they're mostly retired law enforcement, military and in some cases....active law enforcement / military. Time for dinner....this time, I venture off campus to a steak and ribs joint down the way on highway 92....it's called the Bright Spot, and let me tell you...some of the best baby back ribs I've ever had!!! I stop off to fuel the KFYI News truck, pick up some snacks and head back to Camp Minuteman.....I'm in my room only 10 minutes when I hear a woman walking down the hall, knocking on every door announcing loudly that there's an emergency meeting in the lobby in 15 minutes.....curious, I head to the lobby where people are already gathering.....Jim Gilchrist walks in with a very stern look on his face, pacing back and forth silent for a few moments when he says...."Listen...earlier today we received a credible threat hand delivered to Chris Simcox...it says to expect 24 Mexican activists to 'rush' the border near Naco....this is to taunt, tease and engage the Minutemen...the intent is to prompt one of the volunteers to start violence, or shoot....under no circumstances are you to do either...do I make myself clear?" "Yes, sir!!!" The crowd shouts.......Jim goes on to explain that their intel says this is most likely a diversion tactic to force the Minutemen to the section of the border where the 'rush' will take place...and while that's happening...A Mexican gang will launch an assault on the Minuteman Compound and Headquarters. Well, that certainly got the attention of every person in the room....there was a brief silence then, everyone started to speak at once...Jim finally got everyone to quiet down, then, introduced one of the heads of security for the MMP...this man begins a quick lesson on how to defend yourself against a frontal charge/assault....a lesson on drawing your weapon with a 21 foot distance threshold....and a lesson on how to thwart a knife attack. This man then introduced another man who filled us in on the plan to secure the compund...how they will fortify the area with additional armed security, and place makeshift sensors around the area to detect when someone, or something, enters our perimeter.
I look over at 2 women who have been very sweet and positive the whole time I've been here, they are very cheerful every morning when I pass them in the hall...they're big talk show fans and drove here from California...now, I watch as one wells up with tears, the other puts her head in her hands....both obviously scared and concerned...they ask questions, they wonder if the current volunteers on the line (border) have the new info..they are truly concerned for the safety of everyone....Jim, in a very powerful voice, proclaims that if anyone even so much as draws their weapon, fires their weapon and/or shoots someone it had better be the very last resort with imminent threat to life....if not, he will stand by the side of the prosecutor and help put you in jail.
I lean over to one of the volunteers whom I've been talking with (he's the guy who gave me the micro-cassette interview)...I told him maybe I should've stopped by Target on the way down and bought a gun (lol).....he looked at me and said, in a slight southern drawl... "Are you ok with guns, son? I said, "Yeah, they don't bother me" He reached around his side, into a duffel bag, and pulled out a Smith and Wesson .357 Magnum.....very comfortably he said, "Here you go boy, you'll need this" and handed me the gun..."Just be careful, there's no safety and when you put it in your pants just be careful not to blow anything off you may need in the future (LOL)" This was a very surreal moment for me...I took the gun from his hand and held it for a moment..the only thing I could think of is - has it really come to this? As I got up to take my new piece of equipment to the room, he said, "Wait, you'll need these" And proceeded to pour a handful of hollow point bullets in my hand. I put the gun on the floor next to my cot.....the bullets went in one of my bags...the gun was fully loaded.....I was still feeling very strange about this gun thing.....again, I'm not frightened by them...it's just that if you're not around them everyday, I think it needs a little getting used to....in an odd moment, I call my parents in Colorado and tell them whats been going on...my parents and I are very close and I felt compelled to contact them..... by now, it's late and I have more stations to service early in the morning...so, the best I can, I try to get some sleep....wish me luck!
Los Angeles lost one of the best Talk Show Hosts, Joe Crummey to KFYI in Arizona.
I guess you saw the latest NYT article about how criminal migrants pay "10% of the surplus" of the SSN system. I always fall for stories like that - feeling shame or dumb like they want me to.
But this is just more of the "cheap lettuce" argument. As if cheap lettuce and some enhancement to the SSN system are worth the cost. The cost is having hospitals and schools gorged with criminal migrants from now on.
Sounds like the young journo is having quite an experience.
Interesting stuff. Thanks for posting.
"...criminal migrants pay 10% of the surplus in Social Security..."
To the best of my knowledge, they don't pay anything into SS at all.
I'm willing to be proven wrong, with names and phone numbers.
I'm not so sure I buy into the "cheap labor" excuse for illegals any more. At least around here (primarily grain crops - rice, soybeans, wheat), farmers are hiring "hispanic" workers because they are more reliable than American workers. These hispanics are getting paid the same as Americans in the same job, and in many cases more because of reliability.
If this is true, that pay is no longer a reason for hiring the hispanics (using that term because they are a combination from Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras), then it says something pretty ugly about American workers. And I do realize that the average pay for a farm worker/hand around here is pretty poor - but where would money for higher pay come from? Grain farmers really have no control over their crop prices.
The positive - as far as I can tell, the vast majority of immigrant workers around here are legal (or at least have very realistic papers). That's a lot more than I can say for the majority of Tyson chicken plants - but even there, the illegals are paid the same as the American workers - and Tyson workers actually make fair money. Not enough to get rich, but it's better than farm labor.
Just want to read later no time now..
I met a great Minuteman Project volunteer names Ruben from Los Angeles. He is hispanic. He said that something that really struck him since coming to Cochise County was that the fast food employees, cleaning people at the hotels, Wal-mart employees, busboys, etc. that he's seen do not appear to be illegals despite all of the illegals that pour through Cochise County every day. Aside from the obvious that our employers are obeying the law, his point was this. In Los Angeles all of those same positions are held by illegals, but not here. It shows that these are jobs that Americans WILL work - they're doing it in Cochise County because employers are obeying the law and keeping those jobs available for U.S. citizens. In L.A., the situation is reversed. The employers don't care and are more than willing to hire illegals - therefore the illegals are being hired at the exclusion of U.S. citizens. If anyone wonders why Arizona is seeing a massive influx of refugees from California, this is a significant cause.
>>....he looked at me and said, in a slight southern drawl... "Are you ok with guns, son? I said, "Yeah, they don't bother me" He reached around his side, into a duffel bag, and pulled out a Smith and Wesson .357 Magnum.....very comfortably he said, "Here you go boy, you'll need this" and handed me the gun..."Just be careful, there's no safety and when you put it in your pants just be careful not to blow anything off you may need in the future (LOL)" This was a very surreal moment for me...I took the gun from his hand and held it for a moment..the only thing I could think of is - has it really come to this? As I got up to take my new piece of equipment to the room, he said, "Wait, you'll need these" And proceeded to pour a handful of hollow point bullets in my hand.<<<
LOL.. i love this guy! Patriotic Americans are a special breed.
While their kids eat free from age 4 to 18....I see how they school districts are extending the free meals to weekends and vacations now!
"Smugglers tell the Mexican press that crossing in the area where the Minutemen are patroling is now impossible..."
"About 66,000 illegal immigrants were caught last month in one area where the Minutemen were offering back-up patrol."
here is an archive of the KFI reports...
Mark cracked a joke about buying a gun, then didn't quite know what to do when he got one.
I find that disturbing, but not really bad...
"Smugglers tell the Mexican press that crossing in the area where the Minutemen are patroling is now impossible..."
Thanks very much!
Interesting that the guy from Canada thought there was a border problem there and was hoping the MMP would go to the Canadian border sometime!
But the part about the Mexican gangs trying to confront the Minutemen and attack their compound is scary. Thank God they are armed and have security measures in place, because it doesn't look like our federal gov. cares at all what will happen to the LEGAL U.S. citizens who are trying to protect our land.
Gee, just a few guys and a couple of days......can you spell GOVERNMENT FRAUD....
66,000 in one month....unbelievable.....that that many were actually caught.
And if they only catch 1 out of 5....or 1 out of 10....the President and his supporters of not enforcing the borders is gonna have a problem....
LA is hideous. It makes Santa Ana look like a gate-guarded community. I went to my local city council meeting last night in Orange County where a council member was trying to reverse a decision from the last meeting to close the illegal alien job center. The place was packed, "day laborers" were in tow, a guy sitting beside me asked me why I was there and feigned surprise I was there in support of the closure. He said he thought everyone was there to support the center remaining open. A Hispanic broadcasting outfit was there shoving a camera in the face of those deemed outspoken enough to give them an earful. The job center closure was one of the last items on the agenda, and I couldn't remain there long enough to hear the issue out ... neither could some of the day workers and neither could the OC Register (for press time). I waited for bus, with five "day laborers," to escort us back to the supposed "migrant" part of town.
There weren't that many there even though it was reported that "day laborers" would be there "in droves." I'd guess about 35 ... most likely hand picked for their superior "paperwork." In my area, the sham contractors like to press an argument something like "How do YOU know who's illegal and who's not." I attended a townhall meeting attended by my Congressman some time back when one of these phonies pulled the same crapola ... "Gee, how am I supposed to know ... blah, blah, blah."
Now they are claiming it's "safer" to hire "workers" at the center than on the street. They should serve time with their cabal in Mexico.
You're correct, unless the President gets his house in order, both he and the Republican party will be in deep trouble come 2006, 2008 and beyond. A good first step would be for him to build the damn fence.
It's also safer to hire a hooker in a whore house than on the street. Should the government pay for building and maintenance of whore houses? I mean, whores make money that could/should be paid into Social Security. They're just...ahem...doing the...er...jobs no one else wants to.
You make an excellent point!
Blue Sky....Big Sky.
I've forgotten what that looks like.
This is no longer a sovereign country, and the law is being ignored by those who swore to support those laws, and this disgrace goes right up to the top.
It's heck and being poor and hired out. I wish I could afford to go to so many of these things, from the D.C. meet up, to taking my fair share of abuse with the Minutemen.
And this is during a time of War! Shame (or sham?) on our President.
And don't forget the costs of building schools as well.
Most grain farmers are heavily subsidized by the US Taxpayer to the tune of about $20 billion per year. I expect the farmers could use a little bit of THAT money to pay a decent wage.
But instead the farmers are hiring illegals and that amounts to a second massive subsidy by taxpayers. We get stuck with paying for the health care, education, prisons and social services for all that cheap farm labor.
Exactly where do you get that information from? I won't argue one penny of the subsidies - I know about them ... BUT - If you know farmers who are getting rich from the subsidies, it must not be around here. The VAST majority of farmers here are struggling to stay afloat. In fact, farmers around here are exploring ways to keep the books at least close to in-balance including hunting leases and other alternate uses for the "off season".
Now - maybe the vegetable farmers out west are making a killing from the immigrant labor, but the imported labor around here make the same or more than the American workers - and that's not a lot. In addition, most farmers have continued to do more with less employees.
Now, there is a very small handful of farmers I know who are doing fairly well financially, but there are suspicions of other "cash crops" to bolster their bottom line. IN fact, a few of those have been caught in the last couple of years.
Of course, we could also open the can of worms related to foreign competition for farm products. Particularly heavy are the South American producers - they have FAR fewer regulations and Can pay workers $5 per day. Consumers demand cheap. We already see the cost of that to our manufacturing sector.
And I would love to see the end of farm subsidies. But these subsidies are the "welfare system" for farmers. And much like the welfare system, the farmers don't know how to live without it (and I don't know how they possibly could unless prices go WAY up).
even if you remove the whole economic argument, as the country becomes increasingly populated by Mexicans, the country inevitably will become more Mexican, so there will be more corruption and dishonesty and less respect for rule of law; more apathy or antipathy toward the democratic ideal and other ideas which have made this country what it is. These are corrosive effects on society that you can't put a price on but that we surely will be paying nonetheless.
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