The Real Threat Uncovered by Armed Civilians at the Border

Radical militias want to convince you to fear ‘an invasion.’ When they’re the ones holding the guns, their performance calls attention to a more immediate danger.

Comments: 54

  1. Imagine what non-English speaking people will confront as the "caravan" crosses the border and heads into non-sanctuary territory... We shouldn't pretend these people will be welcomed in America. They're not. Perhaps coverage like this is more a danger to them, the non-documented poor coughing migrant people, than it is to the militias. I am still waiting for the hundreds of wealthy liberals to step up and begin assimilation efforts and the necessary cash injection to acclimate the newcomers to their new homelands.... Surely this is not another case of good talk, but little on funding the basic daily needs these people bring with them? Open your wallets more, and your mouths less.

  2. @Midway I doubt these people need handouts like the rest of the mid-west who are unwilling to learn new trades and adapt to a new economy. These people will work hard and make below minimum wage working for your republican and business leaders - making them richer while they distract you. Economies are complex things and frankly the cost of your daily food intake would double (by conservative estimates) if it wasn't for undocumented labor. The republican leaders understand this and so do their business class donors. They do not want them gone - they only want to rile you up about it so you can vote for them on it while they do nothing and blame the democrats for not letting them do anything. The republicans had all chambers of government on multiple occasions in history and have never enacted any laws that would suggest they ever intend to.

  3. @Midway NO.

  4. @Midway This country depends upon undocumented workers. If you don't like that, you should take issue with the millions of individuals, small business and large corporations who hire undocumented workers. They work twice as hard as documented workers for a lot less money. They pay taxes and they add to society in many ways. The only security they have it that ICE and armed civilian militias will make their lives miserable. You depend on them. They make your lifestyle comfortable. Take a look in the mirror. Liberal or not, you are living off the backs of the undocumented.

  5. We are becoming Nazis.

  6. @John Locke I'm not becoming one. We've always had a wall. Now we've got massive immigration fraud and millions of work visas keeping wages down. At least I can still get cheap products from countries that don't enforce labor and environmental laws.

  7. I live in the UK now but lived on the Arizona / Mexico border for over 40 years. During that time I would come across migrants crossing over into the US all the time. I always found them to be friendly and in no way a threat. Most were coming to work in the fields picking crops, making money that would last them and their families back home the entire year until the next season. Of course there will be some bad apples, that just goes to say. The majority of these people coming now are hard working people that only want safety and a job so they can feed their families. They’re not here to collect welfare or cause trouble, they are here to live a decent, respectable life. All of the current hype and negativity from the current administration is deplorable. Trump keeps spewing his remarks, stirring up his base, and causing problems for all. His promise to build a wall was nothing more then a talking point for his campaign, but now he has to show his base that he meant it. These groups patrolling the border in the name of patriotism is just a load of bull, these guys just have nothing better to do then dress up and play soldier. I guarantee you some of these people have a few loose screws in their heads and a some point, people are going to be injured, raped, or killed by some of these guys. Maybe they should just pack up, go to the fields they are preventing migrants from getting to, and start picking. That should keep them busy for a while.

  8. The reason migration and illegal immigration will never be allowed to continue as it has been is that the population of the world is nearly eight billion, and the growth isn't slowing down. No nation will have open borders, and asylum seeking or illegal immigration will not be allowed. The reason is a very basic economic principle, from high school economics: The tragedy of the commons. Basically, if you allow access to any resource openly, it will be wasted and destroyed like locusts on fields of grain. Immigrants want access to our public and social network resources, and that is a limited pool of resources. Try going to a DMV in any large city in California, and you will have spend your entire day waiting for service because of all the people that need services vastly outnumbering the facilities capacity. This is but one small example of a much larger problem. Thus, as much as you may hate Trump and his ways, he won and will continue to win because of this single issue. Much of the problems, South of our border, are caused by the drug trade and traffic. That will never end. Thus, we will have to take strong and very unpopular measures to limit and end incentives for illegal immigration. I look forward to the next election.

  9. @William This is the incorrect statement in your post: "Immigrants want access to our public and social network resources, and that is a limited pool of resources." The world actually doesn't have a supply problem, we have a distribution problem. There is more than enough food, energy, water, education and health care for all of us. What we don't see before us in infinite supply (fossil fuels, for example) can be replaced by what is infinite for our needs (the wind, the sun). But we need to learn to share, and we need to think with a bigger vision than we have been.

  10. Armed civilian militias at the border? Jailing innocent children? Building giant internment camps at Gitmo to "detain" immigrants and refugees? What kind of monsters have we become in the United States? We fought them and we beat them in 1945, but now we are fast becoming the new nazis and it is truly horrifying.

  11. @Lotus Blossom We were "them" before we fought "them" in WWII. We didn't fight Germany because Hitler was a racist fascist. We fought Germany because they were allied with Japan, and because our friends in Britain were more persuasive. Fascists abounded in the U.S. before WWII. And racist ideology--eugenics--as American as apple pie, sadly. What was slavery? This is the horrible reality that we simply cannot accept. Because it is too painful to realize is true.

  12. @Bill Platt Slavery is alive and well. People like to talk about our own shameful history of slavery because facing the current slave trade in Africa is too much for people to bear...

  13. @Bill Platt Don't forget Manifest Destiny and the systematic genocide of Native Americans.

  14. Every fascist state has started with a group of people dedicated to their leader and willing to do violence on his behalf in order to "solve" the problems he has created or fraudulently identified. Do we see any parallels here?

  15. @Max Farthington sadly we see the parallels everyday in soooo many ways.

  16. @Max Farthington- Hardly. Nazi Germany had the complicity of a large portion of the population. this is just a small group thinking they're doing a good thing. Apples and oranges. the USA is hardly Nazi Germany or Facist Italy.

  17. @DesertCard 40% is an alarmingly large part of the population.

  18. 'Some members also wore badges resembling law enforcement badges. If immigrants “can’t tell the difference,” the group’s “commander” told Buzzfeed, “that’s their problem.”' Woah. Impersonating law enforcement officers like this is SERIOUSLY illegal. Like, FELONY illegal. (Fun fact: it is only a misdemeanor to cross the border illegally.) I hope that these vigilantes are all arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

  19. @K.P. Good point.

  20. Thank you for calling attention to this group of patriotic private citizens trying to assist the overwhelmed Border Patrol. Where can I send them a contribution?

  21. @Bill You are sick.

  22. @Bill "Patriotic"? I see them as psychotic. They think of themselves as vigilantes in the west - they are not. They are fools, made more dangerous by support from people stirred up by Trump's derision for immigrants. I challenge you to envision yourself as a person born and raised in a country where poverty means not being able to feed, clothe or house your family properly. Imagine your children fending off gang members - until they join them. Imagine having little choice but to leave your country to seek a better life in a safer place where you hope to find work. We have crime here, but our nation is vast, and there are safe places in which to raise a family. Still, though, we have frequent school shootings, almost exclusively committed by white children of privilege. We have gangs, black, white and Hispanic, and there are shootings and death in the communities where they rule, but if you have money, you can find a safer place to live without leaving the country. Most people can make a decent living here, but there are vast numbers of people of all backgrounds who live on welfare in America (not getting rich, but getting by). Here's a suggestion for you - don't send these clowns money. Instead, spend a week's vacation volunteering in a detainment center on the border. Interact with the people, and you will see that they are people just like you - only they were unlucky enough to have been born south of the American border.

  23. Ok, while we’re at it: Our neighborhood police are overwhelmed, so let’s have vigilantes pull over all the people speeding and running stop signs. That should be popular. Child protective services are overwhelmed, so let’s have armed people videotaping other people’s kids wherever they go, detaining and interrogating them. Can’t be too careful. Wow, this is gonna be great!

  24. Let's try to fix this instead of winning points in a political debate. How about we reopen closed military bases to house these refugees? The infrastructure is already there, security can easily be put in place and it would be more humane than jails or cages. Jobs created by the reopening should be given to those in the surrounding communities first as they were the ones most affected by the base shut down. Let the refugees themselves help with the reopening as a way to cut costs and restore dignity. If they are going to be here for 2 years then let's take advantage of that time by making them attend English language courses as well as civics to explain what it means to live in the US. If they get asylum then they will be better prepared to join our society. Bad apples and those "gang members and rapists" would easy to isolate and deport. Cost effective, humane and an economic boom to areas that need it, a better way to spend the millions being spent on building walls and jails

  25. My mother was brought across the Mexican border as an infant, with her older sister and brother. Her father was a British mining engineer, fleeing the early events of the Mexican Revolution in a border town. Fortunately for our family her traumatized parents were not detained or turned back. She was naturalized as an adult; her papers show her prior nationality as Mexican/British.

  26. Communities in New Mexico and elsewhere along the border are opening their arms and their shelters, as groups of migrants are brought to their cities. The response in Las Cruces, NM, for example, was "How can we help?" with the local paper publishing an article listing the many ways they could do so on April 17, when the influx began there: Other communities have, with the support of their citizens, reallocated funds from various budgets to open shelters in schools and other available buildings.

  27. If we can't prosecute Donald Trump for obstruction of justice, can we prosecute him for hate speech? Incitement to riot? 99.9% of all people everywhere are good people whom we would have no problem living next to, watching each other's kids, or helping them paint a fence. The vigilantes violate God's law to "love thy neighbor as thyself" and they won't escape prosecution for that. Perhaps someone should remind them of that. Bearing false witness, too. Do they ever see themselves in that light? I doubt it. Donny, if you're reading this, those laws apply to you, too.

  28. People seeking asylum at the border are not invaders, anymore than were Jewish people fleeing Hitlers’s Holocaust or Eastern Europeans fleeing Stalin’s Red Army in 1945. In fact, it was these tragedies which helped create the United Nations Convention on Refugees in1951, an international law signed by the USA. There is an obligation by law to review every asylum seeker’s case. There is no numerical limit on asylum seekers.

  29. Actually, the Jewish people were singled out for their race and religion. The people fleeing this days are of the same race and religion as the other citizens of the country the are fleeing from. There is no comparison

  30. . “I don’t think those are their kids, honestly. They’ve got grips on their wrists, it’s crazy.” This woman has never tried to keep track of a child in a crowd. You do not hold hands as if doing a stroll down the avenue. You grab them by the wrist for a firm grip so as not to be separated.

  31. Just saying, if you're wearing a phony badge and presenting yourself as enforcing the law, guess what? It's YOUR problem, bigly. And your problem is even bigger if your phony badge really looks like a federal badge. By the bye, a thought that might not have occurred to the "militias." The majority of these people are running away from gangs in their native know, groups of heavily armed men who are not cops.

  32. @CA Native The badges don't seem to be a problem for the Border Patrol who buddy up with these extremists. That is probably because they are largely cut from the same cloth.

  33. Hillary Clinton suggested in an interview on TV that our president could solve the problem (as she would, she said) by sending many, many more judges to the areas where the migrants are being held so they can be quickly processed. Those with families in the U.S. would be be put in touch with those being held, Children with no parents would be put into foster care, and those who are migrant workers among the group could be given their green cards so they can pick crops and do the work we depend on from them. Any whose backgrounds show them to be a possible threat to our society could then be dealt with legally. Instead Trump is keeping people en on the border to pile up, no matter their situation, so at a crisis is genuinely being created. I'm glad our citizens are trying to help by volunteering whenever they can, but the situation won't end until we do the right thing -- or rather, until Trump, or his henchmen, do the right thing. In the back of my mind the nagging thought that Hitler didn't actually toss anyone into an oven, his henchmen did, keeps me awake at night.

  34. They are not militias. They are armed bands of people but they are not militias, no matter what they call themselves in their puffed-up self important way.

  35. School yard patrol bullies.

  36. "The more frightening woman, for many, will be Farnsworth; the urgent problem that announces itself will not be that migrants are crossing the border but that clutches of American extremists are confronting them with guns in hand." I guess that there's no problem so complex that some yahoos decide that they can solve it with a Rambo/Dirty Harry wannabe approach. What happens when the coyotes start carrying, as well. And remember - their assault rifles, will be just that, selectable fire and all.

  37. USA citizens behaving just about as un-American as you can get. It's a travesty of justice, decency, and humanity. They should only be treated the same way. What goes around should come around!

  38. These gun-toting border thugs don’t just terrorize immigrants. They threaten the US citizen volunteers who are trying to help them. They destroy the environment with their big vehicles and encampments. They broke into a mosque in Phoenix and desecrated it. They’ve bullied and terrified political protesters. They threaten and harass asylum seekers who have been released legally into the US by ICE. If they weren’t white men they’d be arrested as criminals (and some have.) They are racist terrorists, and their leader, Trump, encourages and empowers their terrorism.

  39. Sneaking into our country is a crime and anyone doing it is a criminal. Anyone can make a citizens arrest. It's completely legal to detain criminals. It's done everyday in this country.

  40. @Jim Tagley When you take the law into your own hands you are taking a risk.

  41. @Zetelmo When you sneak into a foreign country, committing a criminal act, you are taking a risk.

  42. @Jim Tagley When you apply for asylum you are following the law. These folks are trying to apply for asylum.....

  43. These "militias" seem like they are committing kidnapping. See New Mexico Statutes 30-4-3. False imprisonment: False imprisonment consists of intentionally confining or restraining another person without his consent and with knowledge that he has no lawful authority to do so. More than a year in prison. The entire "militia" seems like they might be charged. Why not?

  44. @ronnyc How is it false imprisonment? It's a legitimate citizens arrest of a known criminal. Unless, of course, people from NYC don't consider breaking into our country a criminal act. If these migrants are escaping danger, why don't they seek asylum in the first legitimate country they come to, in Mexico?

  45. As 2020 approaches, we must understand this fundamental truth: Donald Trump doesn't want any resolution to the humanitarian catastrophe that already exists in the Northern Triangle and the humanitarian catastrophe that is evolving along our southern border. Indeed, he wants it to worsen. And will do what he can to make it worsen. He could not have been elected and cannot win re-election apart from a deeply divided, fearful/angry populace. And, from the day of his 2015 candidacy announcement, he has not stopped using the "threat" of "a brown invasion" to evoke fear and anger in a white voter bloc specifically vulnerable to his demagoguery. Trump knew Republicans could not win the 2018 mid-terms by running on the economy---for all of his braggadocio about it, too many people across the country just weren't "feeling it." He knew they could not win by running on their "beautiful" health care plan---they didn't have one and even now Trump claims he'll present it AFTER the 2020 election. So, they ran on the most divisive, fear/anger-producing issue available: People of color "invading" and "infesting" the country and destroying Western (read, White) Civilization. It didn't work but it's what they know best. Hence, Trump seeks to make matters worse in Central America by deleting all foreign aid. The worse conditions become, the more people will show up at the border. And, as the crisis grows, so will the divisions/fear/anger among white voters. Trump is counting on it.

  46. The fact that the migrants are not requesting asylum in Mexico, the first country they entered on their caravan, just proves that their real motivation in coming to the U.S. is purely economic.

  47. @joe What's your point?

  48. I appreciate what these guys do. Our borders need to be protected and our immigration laws upheld, like all laws. Illegal immigration and lax border control is a problem and why does the right seem to take it seriously and not the left? Pres Obama knew better but really didn't deal with it firmly because he didn't have political support, nor the personal will. I'm with Pres Trump on this.

  49. Obama deported a record number of illegal immigrants, most of them actual criminals. Much of the Latino community heavily criticized him for it. If I recall correctly, illegal border crossings declined as well. Compared to the bigotry, fear mongering and lies (Muslim prayer rugs?), Obama’s and W Bush’s approaches were adult ones. This compared to your guy, who can’t even get the Dreamers issue right.

  50. @RDG Trump supporters don't want their opinions challenged by your pesky facts.

  51. If we can't prosecute trump for - constant lying - emoluments violations - immoral behavior - incitements of criminal behavior - racism If we can't prosecute Trump for things like that, then why are we prosecuting people who are running for their lives from terrorism?

  52. "No matter how astounded they purport to be about what they’ve discovered, it’s the people holding the guns who present the immediate danger. It feels wrong to say the migrants in this video pose a threat — even a hypothetical one. Barely any of them look into the camera. Most are completely silent, as lunatics circle them, pointing flashlights into their eyes and screaming into cellphones." That's a powerful closing!

  53. Patriots? More like deplorable personified.