Minutemen Watch: 2005
December 2005: News About Minutemen
12/22: Going "Native"
- A New Strategy From Anti-Immigrant Movement
With the Threat of a Homosexual Takeover Averted, Conservatives Take Aim at Their Next Target--Immigrants >>> Read More
12/21: What's in a name?
Modern Minutemen can't talk their way out of their moniker's past
Remember way back in April when creepy paranoids Jim Gilchrist and Chris Simcox, fabricators of the Minutemen Project, fooled the laziest mainstream media outlets into marketing a couple hundred ignorant, cranky crackers as the vanguard of a bold, new movement of polite vigilantes concerned about immigration issues? >>> Read More
12/19 US-Mexico Border:
Vigilante Anti-Immigration Group Gaining
12/10: Glendale police
arrest SOS demonstrator, protesters clash over day labor center
GLENDALE, CA: About 10 members of the group Save Our State gathered Saturday (Dec 10) on the corner of San Fernando Road and Harvard Street to protest the day labor center, but they were met by more than 200 counter-protesters who shouted slogans in support of the center.
One Save Our State protester was arrested at the sometimes tense event. "He shoved one of the counter-protesters," said Glendale Police Department Sgt. Tom Lorenz. "We will not tolerate that kind of behavior."
Save Our State objects to the services the labor center provides to illegal immigrants and the role that the Home Depot store across the street played in the construction of the center.
"We just want to send a message out to our government," said Don Schank, a member of Save Our State, the organization that organized the protest. "We can't take everybody that wants to come to our country." Schank said it was not the laborers themselves that he blamed. "Heck, if I was over there [in another country], I would want to get here too," he said. The real issue is securing the nation's borders and reclaiming the country, Schank said.
Veronica Federovsky, an organizer for the National Day Labor Organizing Network, said protesting the labor center is a thinly-veiled form of racism. "We are not criminals," she said. "We are just trying to work."
The labor center, said Juan Rodriguez, who coordinates the center for the city, is not for Mexican immigrants alone, but for anyone who wants to use it. Many of the counter-protesters shared Federovsky's sentiments, and at times the interchange between the two groups grew heated. Supporters of the day labor center chanted "racist" at the group of protesters and told them to "go home to Europe."
The police department had spoken with the organizers of the event beforehand to explain the kind of behavior that is appropriate and to clarify the role police officers would play. "We are here only to protect your First Amendment rights," Lorenz said.
From across the street, inside the gate of the day labor center, Cesar Harrarte watched the action silently. "I come here every day," he said. "It's a good place to come."
WESTMINSTER, CA: 12/1: THERESA DANG ACQUITTED OF ALL CRIMINAL CHARGES!
WESTMINSTER, CA -- After a day of deliberation at the West Justice Center, a mostly white, middle-aged jury composed of engineers, homemakers, and administrative assistants found Theresa Dang, 26, of Westminster, California, not guilty, on two misdemeanor theft charges for allegedly stealing a flashlight that was lost by a police officer at a Wednesday, May 25, 2005 counterdemonstration against Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist in Garden Grove.
The jury realized this case had nothing to do with a lost flashlight, said Duane J. Roberts, one of the organizers of the May 25th counterdemonstration. They saw that this was a politically-motivated charge brought forth by the Garden Grove Police Department against Dang for exercising her constitutional rights of free speech and assembly."
Not only was the Deputy District Attorney handling the case unable to offer any conclusive evidence proving the flashlight in question was owned by a Garden Grove Police officer, but testimony made under oath suggests they have a shoot first, ask questions later policy.
It appears that Garden Grove Police put the cart before the horse, said Roberts. In their zeal to persecute Dang for her outspoken criticism of the way they handled themselves on the night of May 25th, they filed criminal charges against her before conducting a thorough investigation of all the facts. If they had been seriously interested in doing the latter, they would have found out she committed no crimes.
In comments that Orange County Superior Court Judge Erick L. Larsh made during the jury selection process, an average trial like this costs California taxpayers about $22,000 per day.
Taxpayers should be outraged
that Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas wasted an estimated
$50,000 in court expenses to bring this case to
Roberts further adds: District
Attorney Rauckauckas needs to drop pending criminal charges against
three other men arrested on the night of May 25th by Garden
Duane J. Roberts
Nov 30 Updates: Theresa Dang's trial unexpectedly happened to end today, with the jury going into deliberations at around 4:00 pm. We're expecting them to come up with a verdict sometime December 1st Morning.
11/29 Deputy DA hits Theresa Dang with new criminal charge!
And yes, I said *charges*, because the Orange
County District Attorney's Office today accused her of committing
yet another criminal offense! Yup, they pulled a wand out of their
magic hat and *proof* accused Ms. Dang for "theft of lost property"
-- with no new evidence! >> Read
Theresa Dang, 25, is expected to go to trial at the West Justice Center in Orange County on a misdemeanor petty theft charge of allegedly stealing a flashlight that was dropped by a police officer at a May 25th counterdemonstration against Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist in Garden Grove.
Dang was one of 300 protesters at the counterdemonstration
and one of four people thrown to the ground when struck by a minivan
driven by Van Nuys resident Hal Netkin, a Minuteman supporter, who
operates several websites on the internet that blame 'illegal immigrants'
from Mexico for causing all of
On June 1st, Dang hand-delivered a letter she co-authored to the Orange County District Attorney's Office asking that Netkin be investigated for a crime; she also criticized police for mishandling the incident at a June 14th meeting of the Garden Grove City Council. Two days later, her home was raided by police searching for a flashlight.
Please support her struggle against the injust and the fight against racist Minuteman!
Recent news about Theresa
11/26: Minutemen Protest Show Outside NBC Studios
BURBANK, CA November 26 [Los Angeles IMC] In a formidable display of organization and discipline, at 9:00 a.m. fifteen members of the Mexica Movement and a handful of their supporters stood in opposition to thirty-five minutemen at the intersection of West Alameda and West Olive Avenues.
With matching T-shirts, their flag, an 8-foot banner, and carefully crafted signs, Mexica Movement stretched their forces along forty feet of the corner, in somber and determined contrast to the minutemen to the south, some of whom bounced from foot to foot waving small U.S. flags over their heads to old Beatles tunes.
The minutemen were outside of the NBC studios protesting a recent episode of "Law and Order," in which a fictional group called The Countrymen murdered border crossers. The minutemen's bullhorn was commandeered by two of the four African-Americans standing with them. One was homeless advocate Ted Hayes, sporting a U.S. flag draped around his neck. Hayes, who once tried to have Food Not Bombs members arrested for feeding the homeless, had concocted a short-lived plan with Border Watch leader James Chase to transport homeless people to the Minutemen's border actions. Today Hayes broadcast, "Uncle Tom was the good guy. Hitler was good at first. Then he started killing people." He and the other spokesperson called on the Mexica Movement to debate them. They added, "I thought Black people couldn't be racist."
Full report: Nican Tlaca Stand Up to Cowboys by Leslie Radford
10/31: Rally to Stop the Minutemen in Sacramento
October 31st Update (Bay Area Independent Media Center) One of three people arrested at Saturday's demonstration will be arraigned in Sacramento Superior Court on Tuesday, at 1:30 pm in Department 63. Supporters and attorneys will hold a press conference before the hearing. >> Read more
The Bay Area Coalition to Fight the Minutemen called for an action to oppose the Minutemen Project's rally to gather public support for their attempts to harass poor, undocumented border-crossers and to announce their support of a new initiative that would establish a state border police in addition to the existing federal border patrol.
There was a rally on the West Capitol steps in Sacramento on Saturday October 29th. It featured the founder of the Minutemen Project, Jim Gilchrist, and the legislative sponsors of the California Border Police Initiative, amongst others. About 600 people representing anti-racist groups throughout California arrived at the Capitol in busses and carpools from the Bay Area and the Central Valley to confront the Minutemen. Among those attending the protest against the vigilantes were Mexican American Political Association National President Nativo Lopez, former Green Party gubernatorial candidate Peter Camejo, and representatives from Bay Area Coalition to Fight the Minutemen, Deport the Migra Coalition, Zapatista Solidarity Coalition, Brown Syndicate and other statewide organizations. Three people were arrested Saturday at an anti Minuteman rally at the State Capitol, and two were treated for injuries.
The demonstration was sponsored by the Bay Area Coalition to Fight the Minutemen, the Deport the Migra Coalition, the Zapatista Solidarity Coalition, the Mexican American Political Association, the Brown Syndicate, and other groups statewide. >> Read more
Oct 29: The No Border Movement Goes to Sacramento
mintuemen had planned a press conference on the steps of the california
capitol today to announce their initiative for the california
border patrol and show how great they are. A diverse group from
all over California including working class people and directly
affected communities showed up to say otherwise.
10/16 Chicago, IL: Anti-immigrant Conference Faced Protest, Blockade, Arrests
by CIMC - TF / MS
[Chicago Indymedia Center] Dozens,
and then hundreds [ 1
], of Chicago-area community members delayed, in dramatic fashion, a
organization's meeting in Chicago's Arlington Heights suburb on
the morning of October 15, 2005. Activists linked their bodies arm in
arm to form a human chain at the gates of the school where a meeting
of the Minuteman Project
was slated to take place.
10/7: Borders, Vigilantes, Deaths: Audio and Other Updates
San Diego IMC a compilation
of some recent postings to the newswire concerning some of our three
favorite topics here in San Diego: Borders, Vigilantes, and Death.
Minutemen at the U.S.-Mexico Border
Suspected in Border Shootings
James Chase says "rogue" MIntemen shot 2 Mexicans on border near Campo / Tecate
Minutemen Suspected in Border Shootings
Jim Chase of the California Minutemen admitted to the San Diego press this week that rogue Minutemen shot 2 unarmed Mexicans at the California border near Campo Saturday night. The rogue theory is absolutely true, he said.
Chase claimed no one in his formal organization has fired a weapon, and that he has turned away extremists, but that hes encountered rogue patrols.
According to fellow anti-migrant activist Andy Ramirez
of Friends of the Border Patrol, however, Chase had planned
to bring snipers to the border, a move Ramirez denounced,
saying It scared the hell out of me. We decided we weren't going
to have anything to do with him."
Chase had urged volunteers to bring baseball bats, mace, pepper spray and machetes to the border but said he rescinded the call after the Border Patrol expressed concern about potential violence.
Despite Chases claim to knowledge of the shootings
neither the Border Patrol nor any other federal, state, or local agency
has opened an investigation, despite an earlier claim by San Diego Sheriff
Bill Kolender who said We will not tolerate any kind of hate crimes,
we will not tolerate any violations of the law
Jose Rivera Perez was shot below the left knee while waiting to cross the border about 20 yards south of the steel fence that slices through the desert. His group was approached, Rivera said, by a masked assailant who, when they began to run, fired on them.
Rivera said he was not robbed, according to the
Union Tribune. If he were a bandit he would have robbed us and
taken everything. He only shot at us and ran, Rivera said.
Chase, who has reportedly angered police with a very frequent series of calls over minor matters, told reporters that he has been running into people conducting patrols who have not gone through me There is no indication that Chase reported such patrols to the police, however.
Similar claims of rogue Minutemen activity were made when Minutemen invaded the Arizona border and several migrants were held at gunpoint. Chase claimed this week he had called the Border Patrol after he picked up a migrant couple hitchhiking along a state highway near the borderline, claiming he became suspicious only after stopping to pick them up. He dropped them off near the Border Patrol station in Campo, then called agents to arrest them.
"They looked like a nice couple," he said.
According to the Union Tribune, Heriberto Garcia, regional coordinator of the Mexican National Human Rights Commission, said of the Minutemen, They are feeding feelings of hatred Its very strange that these acts are occurring in this context. Were not discarding any possibilities until authorities find out who did this, one way or another.
Meanwhile, anti-Minutemen activists in the Campo
area reported encountering heavily armed men hiding in bushes the night
of the shooting, some two miles East of Campo in the direction the shootings
took place. The men used Morse code on their flashlights to demand a
password from the activists.
For San Diego Indymedia account see
San Diego Indymedia says
Two migrant people were shot under mysterious circumstances last week in the border region where the Minutemen have been patrolling. One was shot in Mexico and one was shot inside the US. While "Mexican authorities" have claimed that "bandits" were behind it, the victims were quick to point out that nothing was stolen from them. This strange circumstance is added to by the fact that these "bandits" used laser scopes to target their victims.
Numerous calls have been made to the sheriff in Campo, CA, but still no investigation is taking place. In addition, James Chase admits to transporting undocumented people, which is a crime, but he is also not having charges pressed against him, unlike the volunteers in Ariznoa who were sent to jail for taking migrants in critical condition to a hospital. Many are saying, "Chase and Co. MUST be investigated". Gente Unida held a press conference on Friday, July 29th to address this issue.
To contact the sheriff, Phone: (619) 478-5378 Fax: (619) 478-9076 or go to: http://www.sdsheriff.net/rural/substations_campo.html
Approximately 60 activists from around the region converged on the border area south of Campo, CA to peacefully make the point that the Minutemen are not welcome in California and that racist, armed vigilantes arent the solution to the problem of anti-worker, anti-human political and social climate that capitalist globalization presents. Unity among working people is the solution, not the fascist rhetoric and actions that the Minutemen offer.
The anti-Minuteman camp is set in a beautiful region of chaparral about 100 yards from the border. The Minuteman camp is located about 1 mile east of that location.
The man-made border consists of rusted, corrugated metal and steel piping and is accompanied by an access road that runs right next to the border fence. There are several areas where the fence is incomplete and where there are gaps in the fence. I was able to find two such gaps during a 15-minute walk.
Activists arrived throughout the evening and at about 8PM there were about 60 of us. There were also several members of the print and TV media present.
At 9PM on Saturday a vigil was held to honor those who have lost their lives while crossing the border.
Following the vigil we piled into vehicles and headed east along the border road to hold the same vigil up at the Minutemen camp, which is located about 1 mile east of the activists camp.
When we arrived at the Minutemen camp, instead of being confronted by vigilantes armed with guns, we were confronted by a bunch of men in their 30s, 40s, and 50s holding flashlights and video cameras. They just stood there behind a small fence in silence as the protesters had their vigil.
On Minutemen did speak though. While the coordinator of the vigil was reading a story about a man who had died crossing the border, the Minutemen decried, What about my friend who was killed lat week by an illegal alien? To which the coordinator replied, if youre talking about aliens call NASA, but were talking about human beings here. We proceeded with a moment of silence to honor the 3500 that have died crossing the border wall.
When the organized vigil was complete the interactions with the Minutemen began. Some people crossed over to their side of the fence and attempted to engage the Minutemen in a dialogue. For the most part, the Minutemen returned the effort with blank stares, as they seemed to be operating under some sort of a gag order.
James Gilchrist was present though and he was more than vocal, claiming that the protesters had exposed themselves as racists. He provided no explanation however.
A humorous moment came when James Chase, the founder of this particular group of Minutemen put on a pair of full-sized headphones, presumably to make the point that the protestors were making a lot of noise.
Chase provided another interesting moment when he got in his car and left the protest area.
Two San Diego County Sheriffs arrived to keep the peace but there were no arrests.
At 10PM we left. We all headed back to our cars and returned to camp.
At approximately 11:45PM three carloads of Minutemen came to our camp. They were led by Chase himself, although he was in a different truck than the one he drove away from the protest site. He led the Minuteman caravan very slowly right past our camp in an attempt to draw some of us out for a confrontation. It worked. About 25 people walked out into the road and Chase got out of his truck with a rifle. The protestors yelled things like cowards, racists, what the hell do you think youre doing and get out of here with your guns you racist vigilantes.
He didnt point it at anybody but walked next to the caravan as it proceeded north, while someone else drove the fill-sized red pickup truck. One Minuteman was urging someone in the crowd to touch him. Presumably operating from the notion that if he was touched he could proceed to use his gun. All of the Minutemen that got out of their cars armed with either rifles or handguns, some in holsters. They reminded me of the secret service escorting George Bush down the street during his inauguration day parade.
Nobody was intimidated by the antics of the Minutemen, as it was obvious that they were doing them just for the sake of show and in a vain attempt to create a violent confrontation, which is apparently what they really live for. They didnt need to drive past our camp and from that point on they exited and entered the area by way of an access road about 15 feet north, effectively averting passing directly in front of our camp.
At about 12:30AM, the Buenos Noches Brigade returned to the Minutemen camp for some more peaceful protest. Armed with poetry, music, dancing and chanting the BNB effectively drove the Minutemen to frustration. The BNB returned to the camp at about 2AM and at about 2:30AM a long caravan on Minutemen and their vehicles left the area.
Most in our camp were either asleep or had decided to drive home as of 3AM. With a few night owls staying up until 5. I woke up, after sleeping in the back of my truck at about 7:30AM and decided to head home and was back in Los Angeles by 11AM.
The camp is ongoing until August 8. Directions from
the L.A. area: take 60 or 10 FWY east to 15 south, transfer to the 8
east (to El Centro), get off at Buckman Springs Rd. (south) go 12 miles
to # 94 (right) go 1 mile to then take a left on Forrest Gate, stay
on this trail to the border. You will drive right into the camp.
9/25: Anti-racist Activists Confront Neo-Nazis in Laguna Beach
LAGUNA BEACH, SEPTEMBER 25, 2005--At its peak, 40 day laborers were joined by 60 human rights advocates in opposition to a small group from Save Our State at the Day Labor Center in Laguna Beach. By scheduling their event for the morning of the international anti-war rally, Save Our State had hoped for little opposition but were outnumbered five to one by the jornaleros and dedicated supporters of immigrant rights. Reports: Laguna Beach III: SOS and Neo-Nazis Confronted Again by Leslie || Activists confront SOS in Laguna Beach by Rockero420
In a related story activists are claiming that one of their members was wrongfully arrested at this demonstration. Report and photos: Police Harassment at Anti-racist demo by Lal
9/18 San Diego, CA: Deporten a La Migra Marches on Sacramento; Minuteman Training Disrupted in San Diego
A weekend of No Border actions in San Diego confronted the racist groups attempting to mount vigilante border patrols in California. On 9/17, a group of around 50 demonstrators interrupted a "Friends of the Border Patrol" training session, tore down the registration table and flag and entered the hall chanting "No Borders, No Racists, No Borders, No Nations" and "We didn't cross the border, the border crossed us." On 9/18, a No Border March converged on the border from both north and south at Calexico, about two hours east of San Diego.
Meanwhile, on 9/16, a bay area coalition called "Deporten a La Migra" headed to Sacramento to march on the State Capitol and Attorney General's office, condemning the racist vigilantes terrorizing the border. St. Peters' Housing Committee, SF Day Labor Program, Mujeres Unidas y Activas, CARECEN, Heads Up Collective, CISPES, and Just Cause Oakland all sent delegations to present their demands to Schwarzenegger and Lockyer.
8/23 El Paso, TX: Council votes 7 to 1 to oppose Minutemen
By Jon Humbert
The El Paso City Council put the line in the sand at Tuesday's meeting, voting seven to one to oppose the Minutemen in the city limits. Read More...
7/16: SOS in Laguna Beach, CA
by Next Move (Los Angeles IMC)
SOS held their anti-immigrant rally today in Laguna Beach. Seems like 40 or so SOS showed with a sparse counter-demo of about 5-10 folks. Many Socal activists are in Campo right now opposing the Minutemen (Border Patrol Auxiliary?)
According to the accounts below the Stormfront racists were also there and stood shoulder to shoulder with SOS (just like BP).
Once again SOS stands side by side with white supremacists. According to the account below Advocate, Old Preach and other showed up and represented WN (White Nationalists).
Earlier this week Old Preach lit up the indymedia board with his over the top stereotyping of African-Americans.
Check this thread for details:
Account from Baldy
6/25 Protest Against Minutemen, "Save Our State" in Baldwin Park
Report from LA Indymedia
Report by Leslie: BALDWIN PARK, June 25, 2005--By noon, about eight hundred counter protestors stood against the invasion of Baldwin Park by Save Our State from Ventura and Minutemen from Arizona, both militant anti-migration groups, and the Nazi National Vanguard, a white supremacist group, together numbering about forty or fifty. This was the invaders' second unsuccessful effort to attract attention to a monument at the Baldwin Park Metrolink station entitled Danzas Indigenas by renowned artist Judy Baca, which commemorates a Tongva ("Gabrielino") Indian uprising led by Toypurinah against the San Gabriel Mission and the history of the land from that time forward. At their first incursion on May 25, SOS had declared inscriptions on the monument referring to indigenous Mexican culture "seditious."
I was escorted into the celebration by two friends, one looking particularly sharp in his brown beret. We were met by eight hundred celebrants who had come to assert their Indigenous, Mexican, and Chicano culture in the face of the racist intruders, surrounded by cops. A mild-mannered poet burst into a fierce diatribe proclaiming "Genocide alert!" in a poem about Kristallnacht. An interlingual agitprop teatro group told a history of the Native and Mexican land grabs. Behind the tarp that hung as a backdrop, young actors hastily tore off one costume and slipped into the next. They parodied a white SOS member in the large, droopy American-flag hat who had appeared at an earlier demonstration and Lupe Moreno, the Latina spokesperson for SOS. El Pelado ended the acto with a costume transformation revealing him not to be a clown, but a proud Chicano declaring "Ya basta!" (Just below, link to the rest of this report)
REPORTS: Pictures/Report From Baldwin Park by Next Move, More Baldwin Park pictures by Next Move, Baldwin Park Picture Part 3 by Next Move, Preliminary anti-hate rally report by Fredric L. Rice, News From The Front Lines: Baldwin Park Updates, by 1planet1people, Legal action against Joseph Turner, director of SOS, is there a case? by Peoples law collective San Gabriel Valley Tribune: Officials brace for SOS by By Shirley Hsu, Garden Grove United Resistance by Pachuco, "Save Our State" / "Minutemen" Issue City Threats? by Fredric L. Rice, SOS to Abandon L.A. County? by Next Move
6/18: Home Depot Save Our State Anti-immigrant Demo and Counter Demo
It was a few minutes after 9:00, and it was already clear that Joe, determinedly grinning, and his ragtag crew from Save Our State had lost their effort to stop Alhambra Home Depot shoppers from supporting the store's hiring practices. What wasn't clear was why the police let most of the Alhambra and Los Angeles counter-demonstrators stand behind and on either side of the small Ventura group, as well as across the street, for more than an hour. Thirty Alhambra, Monterey Park, and Glendale police lined up along Morengo Street facing both groups on the sidewalk, those complaining about Home Depot's community-based hiring practices in front and those supporting it directly behind them and to spilling along the sidewalk on either side. . . .
UPDATES: Statement on Alhambra by SGVNPJ, Pasadena Star-News gets Alhambra Protest story 100% wrong by A
REPORTS: Alhambra: And Then They Came
6/17: Garden Grove Police pursue phony criminal charge against woman hit by Minuteman supporter
In one of the worst cases of political repression ever seen by the author of this article, the Orange County District Attorney's Office and Garden Grove Police Department have jointly launched an unprecedented and outrageous attack against a young Vietnamese woman whose only real crime was to express her dissent with the powers that be.
UPDATES: Theresa Dang's arraignment hearing continued until Wednesday, July 27th by Duane J. Roberts,
REPORTS: OC WEEKLY makes fun of Garden Grove police over flashlight raid by STEVE LOWERY, The LA Times prints letter critical of GGPD raid of Theresa Dang's home by Duane J. Roberts, Garden Grove Police Lt. Mike Handfield sends me a message about Theresa Dang by Duane J. Roberts GG Police pursue phony criminal charge against woman hit by Minuteman supporter by Duane J. Roberts (Photo by 1Planet1People), SOLIDARITY ACTIVIST W/ GARDEN GROVE 5 INTIMIDATED BY POLICE by phuk minutemen
5/26: Attacks and Arrests on Protesters in Garden Grove, California!
5/27 UPDATE 1: 4 students released, one still in Orange County Jail: 550 N. Flower St., Santa Ana (714) 647-4500
5/27 UPDATE 2: Duane J. Roberts Just learned from Garden Grove police, that Hal Netkin was released from jail early this morning and will *not* face criminal charges for running his minivan into four people at the protest against Minuteman founder Jim Gilchrist.
5/27 Update 3: Last protestor
arrested by Garden Grove police at Minuteman demo expected to be released
[Los Angeles Independent Media
Center] Wednesday, May 26. Yesterday the man who hit four pro-immigrant
protesters with his van was released by the police while four other protesters
who were peacefully demonstrating their anger toward the anti-immigrant
group, the minutmen, are still in jail. Some are detained on bail as high
as $50,000 for allegedly throwing bottles of water at the police. Police
officers also felt threatened by a person in a wheel chair (I kid you
not), and they arrested him without any apparent reason other than being
an easy target for arrest.
Grove: From Where I Stood by Leslie,
Please Call the Garden Grove, CA Women's Civic Club to cancel Jim Gilchrist's effort to organize Minutemen vigilantes in Garden Grove, CA on Wednesday (5/25) night! More Info..
Los Angeles IMC Analysis: Minuteman Project Expanding to California?
Minuteman Project founder Jim Gilchrist, who describes himself as a "conservative and a left-wing wacko," will address his followers in Garden Grove, California, in what seems to be an attempt to expand his project to Southern California. The meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 25, at 7:30 PM at the Women's Club at 9501 Chapman Avenue, Garden Grove, CA .
Found in Garden Grove by rp, Border
Vigil Planned for California by Gandhi,
5/14 Baldwin Park, CA: Right Wingers from Save Our State Get a Strong and Angry Response
[Los Angeles Independent Media Center] Baldwin
Park, on Saturday, May 14, an outraged community organized a counter demonstration
to protest the right wingers from Save
Our State (SOS) who want the city to remove the wording on a monument
that they consider to be offensive and seditious. Artist Judith
F. Baca who was commissioned to build this 1993 monument says that
the work is a public memory dedicated to the preponderant Latino population
in the city, to make visible their invisible history.
April 2005: Protests Ignite and Media
Swarms as Minuteman Project Invades Southern Arizona!
Nazis, racists join Minuteman Project
Southern Poverty Law Center
April 22, 2005
DOUGLAS, Ariz. | April 22, 2005 -- For months, Jim
Gilchrist promised that his Minuteman Project would peacefully observe
the Arizona border as a protest against illegal immigration. Volunteers
ý he said there would be 1,300 of them ý would be carefully
screened, with FBI help, to keep out white supremacists and racists.
No one would be allowed to bear guns except those who had permits to
carry concealed weapons.
Indeed, Gilchrist told USA Today, these men and women sought only to bring attention to a major social problem. Most were "white Martin Luther Kings."
Maybe so. But Gilchrist's accuracy has been less than sterling.
As the month-long April project started, some 300 volunteers showed up ý a thousand fewer than predicted. An FBI official denied that the agency was screening Gilchrist's or any other private group's members. At least four-fifths of volunteers did carry weapons, and almost none were checked for permits. Racist talk abounded. And at least some neo-Nazis and other racists did join in Gilchrist's project.
On April 2, as the month-long effort got under way, the Minuteman Project held a protest across the street from the U.S. Border Patrol headquarters in Naco, Ariz. Prominent among the demonstrators were two men who confided that they were members of the Phoenix chapter of the National Alliance ý the largest neo-Nazi group in America. One of the two, who sat in lawn chairs throughout, held a sign with arrows depicting invading armies of people from Mexico ý a sign identical to National Alliance billboards and pamphlets, except without the Alliance logo.
The presence of Alliance members was not much of a surprise, and there were likely more than that pair. "We're not going to show up as a group and say, 'Hi, we're the National Alliance," Alliance official Shaun Walker told a reporter in the run-up to the protest. "But we have members ... that will participate."
In fact, National Alliance pamphlets were distributed in Tombstone and this predominantly Hispanic community just two days before the Minuteman Project got going. "Non-Whites are turning America into a Third World slum," they read. "They come for welfare or to take our jobs. Let's send them home now."
Many other white supremacists had promised to attend, including members of the neo-Nazi Aryan Nations, but it was difficult to know if they showed up.
One well-known extremist did appear. Armored in a flak jacket and packing a .38-caliber snub-nosed revolver, Joe McCutchen joined other volunteers patrolling the barbed wire fence separating the United States and Mexico near Bisbee, Ariz.
McCutchen is the recently appointed chairman of Protect Arkansas Now, a group seeking to pass legislation that would deny public benefits to undocumented workers in that state. More to the point, he was identified by the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens as a member in 2001 ý a charge he denies, though he admits that he did give a speech that year to the group that has described blacks as "a retrograde species of humanity." As recently as summer 2003, McCutchen wrote anti-Semitic letters to his hometown newspaper in Fort Smith, Ark.
"A lot of these people coming in, they're diseased," McCutchen told one group of fellow volunteers, who treated him like a visiting celebrity. "They've got tuberculosis, leprosy. I mean, you don't even want to touch them unless you're wearing gloves. So why the hell should we pay our taxes to cure them?"
"They're turning our country into a Third World dumping ground," he said. "We're losing our language to them, losing our culture. They're taking over, and if we don't stop [immigration], our society will not survive. That's why I'm here."
Back in March, Gilchrist had also warned that he had been told that leaders of an extremely violent gang made up of Salvadorans ý the Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13 ý had ordered its members to teach "a lesson" to the Minuteman volunteers. As it turned out, however, no frightening, brown-skinned gangsters showed up.
But the National Alliance was certainly there.
The day after the Minuteman rally in Naco, the two Alliance members there ý one of whom identified himself as "Sam Adams" ý were assigned to an observation post about a mile from McCutchen's location. They arrived there after a 10-minute "training session," driving to the post as they blasted white power music.
"We understand why Gilchrist and [project co-organizer
Chris] Simcox have to talk all this P.C., crap," said one. "It's
all about playing to the media. That's fine. While we're here, it's
their game and we'll play by their rules. Once Minuteman's over, though,
we might just have to come back and do our own thing."