Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Minutemen Disband

Here's a little ray of sunshine to help usher in the Spring. One of the biggest vigilante groups in Arizona has disbanded after realizing that their violent calls for revolution along the border with Mexico would, you know, actually cause violent revolution.

The group's president, Carmen Mercer, of Tombstone, said she and the board's two other directors voted to end the group's five-year run because they were worried her recent "call to action" would attract the wrong people to the border.

On March 16, Mercer sent out an e-mail urging members to come to the border "locked, loaded and ready" and urged people to bring "long arms." She proposed changing the group's rules to allow members to track illegal immigrants and drug smugglers instead of just reporting the activity to the Border Patrol.

After receiving a big slew of responses with people taking them on their word, the group flinched and folded. Of course, there's also that pesky money issue that has undermined their efforts. Under the leadership of recent Senate-hopeful Chris Simcox, they bilked their ignorant donors out of nearly two million dollars:

But while the Minuteman PAC spent $1.7 million during the last election cycle (as of Nov. 24), less than 9 cents of every dollar went to help candidates -- either directly through contributions or indirectly through advertisements and mailings supporting or opposing specific candidates. By contrast, nine similar PACs spent, on average, nearly four times as much --about 34 cents of every dollar -- on contributions to federal campaigns and on materials calling for the election or defeat of particular candidates.

2009 SPLC Intelligence Report Intelligence Report

With the recent escalation of political intimidation in the aftermath of the passage of health insurance reform, this is one less opportunity for the gun nuts to practice their shooting. It's amazing that the Minutemen have more sense than the GOP leadership to provide an opening for gun violence; because we all know that if something isn't done to lower the heat, bullets will eventually fly. This country's history almost ensures it.

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