Skip to comments.ACLU plans to follow Minuteman Project
Posted on 03/09/2005 1:15:10 PM PST by Spiff
ACLU plans to follow Minuteman Project
BY BILL HESS
Wednesday, March 9, 2005 11:31 AM MST
Sierra Vista Herald/Review
BISBEE, Arizona - The Minutemen are coming to Cochise County next month, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona is, too.
At least two ACLU observers will tag along wherever Minuteman Project volunteers go, said, Ray Ybarra, an Ira Glasser Racial Justice Fellow, a title given him by the national ACLU headquarters.
Hopefully, he said, there will be no confrontation with "the vigilantes."
"If they go hiking through the desert, we'll be there with them. If they sit in lawn chairs, we'll sit in lawn chairs next to them," he said.
The object is to watch the volunteers' actions.
By following the volunteers, the ACLU of Arizona is putting those involved in the Minuteman Project on notice that the violation of the civil rights of "migrants" will not be accepted, Ybarra said.
Chris Simcox, co-organizer of the Minuteman Project and longtime advocate of helping patrol the border using citizens, said the ACLU is not a detriment to the proposed operations planned in April. He said ACLU members have patrolled with the Civil Homeland Defense, a Tombstone-based group he formed.
Simcox said the ACLU observers can walk along with the volunteers and sit with them.
The more presence there is, the bigger the message will be to illegal immigrants, Simcox said.
"It will create more of a deterrent," he said.
On previous operations, ACLU members could not find that anything wrong had been done, he added.
Ybarra, a native of Arizona who was born in Douglas and now works out of that community as part of the fellowship program, said groups who come into the county with the intention of enforcing federal immigration laws at the minimum have to be monitored.
Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever has been remiss in stopping the assault on illegal immigrants, Ybarra said Tuesday.
"The activities of the current vigilantes and those new volunteers constitutes unlawful imprisonment, but unfortunately the Cochise County sheriff attended a meeting of the Minuteman Project as a sign of support.
"To this date, he (Dever) has yet to arrest any private citizens for unlawfully detaining or abusing migrants despite a vast amount of evidence hat these incidents have occurred," he said.
Ybarra sent Dever a letter Monday calling on the sheriff to do his duty as the county's top law enforcement officer. Ybarra's letter urged the sheriff to uphold Arizona laws. He said the Minuteman Project has the potential to violate a number of state statutes, including false imprisonment and unauthorized detention.
Dever said Ybarra's idea that he is not upholding the law is based on innuendo and false assumptions.
The sheriff reiterated that every complaint about illegal immigrants being denied any of their rights and allegations of being assaulted or harmed in any way are investigated and reports submitted to the Cochise County attorney and the federal government for decisions if charges are to be made.
As for Ybarra's assertion that he met with those putting on the monthlong border campaign and patted them on the back, Dever said nothing is further from the truth.
The sheriff met with Jim Gilchrist, a co-organizer of the Minuteman Project, and other volunteers in Tombstone in January. Dever said that meeting was to inform Gilchrist of Arizona's laws and the sheriff's view of the laws.
Dever said no criminal activities will be condoned by anyone, those involved in the Minuteman Project, groups or individuals supporting them or organizations and individuals against them. The application of the law will "be swift," he said.
"I'm not going to let anything get out of hand," he said.
There are reports a violent gang called MS-13, made up of criminals with ties to Central American nations, may attempt to disrupt the Minuteman Project, the sheriff said. Although intelligence on MS-13's intentions are not clear, other reports also include the potential that pro and counter groups may show up, Dever said.
"It's a powder keg just waiting for someone to light the fuse," the sheriff said.
By having additional people along the border, such as the proposed legal observers of the ACLU of Arizona, the situation could deteriorate, the sheriff said.
According to a Feb. 28 update on the Minuteman Project Web site, 863 people from all 50 states, including two from Canada, have signed up to come to Cochise County.
Many people who want the border closed say the United States is being invaded by illegal immigrants to the detriment of the nation's economic well being and security.
"The migration by our southern neighbors is not an invasion," Ybarra counted.
He said immigration has always been part of U.S. history, and immigrants make the nation stronger.
ACLU of Arizona will be training individuals as legal observers with workshops in Douglas, Tucson and Phoenix. Ybarra said people in northern California have expressed interest in assisting ACLU of Arizona with its planned project.
"Legal observers will be following these private citizens as they attempt to illegally enforce federal immigration laws," he said.
The observers will report any violations to lawyers, who will be available to file actions against the Minuteman Project people, Ybarra said.
To Ybarra, the Minuteman Project volunteers are dangerous.
"The vigilantes are symbolic of the fear and misunderstanding that exists in our society," he said.
HERALD/REVIEW senior reporter Bill Hess can be reached at 515-4615 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
but I just did and pinged you.
They're already here. It's called Bisbee, AZ -- you can toss in ELF and whatever the free Mary-Jane group is called too.
I may have been a critic before, but I'm starting to become a follower again.
I think I'm seeing the light.
To hell with the ACLU and all they stand for.
Glad to hear it, Sonny. ....and it appears you're not alone.
I have confidence the MM will play by the rules ....although one can't be too sure about how they'll respond to the obnoxious pinheads in the ACLU ;)
I can't blame anyone that hurts a member of the ACLU, the only question is, if you hurt one of them, can you still hire another member to be your defence lawyer?
As if we didn't know just who's civil liberties are in their interest.
So who's going to watch them?
They won't have sunscreen, no jackets or warm clothes for night time, water, no insect repellent, no hat, long trousers, solid and well broke in hiking boots, space blanket, or means of emergency contact, no first-aid kit, and no flipping idea about food. They'll probably think that Domino's Delivers.
He was born and raised within spitting distance of the only legal POE for 100 miles in any direction.
Oh, I'm sorry. You were being sarcastic.
Dang, I've got to learn to read you better!
Seriously, anyone who knows anything about the subject can read Ybarra's words and figure out what he's all about.
My daughter-in-law's folks found themselves on the US side of the border in Bisbee when we became a state, and have been proud US citizens ever since. They absolutely detest the illegals coming in now.
Word is that the menu for the MMP is Western Baked beans and Corn Bread before sun-up and movement to the observation station then each succeeding meal will include a hearty helping of Western Baked beans. That's how they'll respond to the obnoxious pinheads in the ACLU. With an air of indignities.
Let 'er rip Chester -- phhhhhiiiipppp!
I wonder why one of our three County Supervisors is trying his darndest to keep the MMP from getting permits to do their thing...?
Yep that's the general idea and forcing the visual as well.
Okay, so where is the article with Janet's comments?
This reporter must have verbatim copied the press release of the communist founded ACLU
here http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1359591/posts the meat is in reply one where I copied from the story.
If the ACLU *really* wants a 'border experience', be sure to issue them trash bags & let them have the *pleasure* of picking up tons of trash/human waste.