Originally posted by jsobecky
The gov't is not allowing private groups to enforce the laws. The Minutemen are not enforcing the law on their own.
Granted they aren't making arrests, but surveillance is also a common law enforcement function. I'm not saying that private citizens don't have a
right to open there eyes in public and report a crime if they see it, or take some other legally allowable response. What I am saying is that by
failing to do its part, the government has made such action a major contributor to what little enforcement exists.
And a discrimination lawsuit is frivolous on it's face. How can it be discrimination unless the elements necessary to create that atmosphere
exist, i.e., Poles, Germans, Irish, etc., also sneaking across?
Nobody said a discrimination lawsuit. I agree that there are not sufficient grounds to sue the minutemen for discrimination. I'm saying that illegal
immigration charges could concievably be defeated on the grounds of selective enforcement targeted against the Mexican border. The argument would be
that by not sufficiently policing either border or visa-holders, the federal government has in some portion restricted its enforcement of the law to
the border being watched and reported on by private groups.
Afterall, there are
more than just Latinos coming in. People who overstay their visas are illegal as well, are they not? There probably are a
couple of illegal Germans, there are definately illegal middle eastern and asian illegals. Some of them became rather well known about 5 and a half
I wouldn't worry about the 9th anyway. They are the most overturned Circuit Court in the land (over 70% of their decisions that are
Now factor in the possibility that there is not an appeal, then a 30% chance of a bad ruling even if it is appealed, and we're looking at a
considerable possibility of a very bad precedent eventually being set and virtually tying our hands on the border, just because the government didn't
feel like living up to its responsibilities.
The direction I'm coming from on the broader issue is just that I'm a person who likes to see things done the right way. I don't believe that the
legislative process should have to be circumvented. It should do what the majority wants it to do, and then that should be followed. Voters need to
press this issue, try to force this responsibility on the government for decision one way or another, and then when the government that the majority
puts in either starts enforcing the law or does away with the law, let's respect the will of the majority and move on.
I'm generally a pragmatist and I can be fairly shrewd on how things could theoretically be achieved, but once in a while I like to indulge in the
reasonable expectation that the democracy should work and that responsive government should deliver results.
I cannot disagree more. You are proposing anticipatory legislation. Forbidding the legal carrying of weapons because they might be used
in the commission of a crime.
I understand how you would interpret it that way, but that is definately not my intention. In growing up around guns, I've always been taught that if
you handle a weapon responsibly, it won't hurt anyone, and that if you handle it irresponsibly, you are very likely to kill someone. I generally
believe that and as such I believe that weapons themselves should not be targeted, but agravating circumstances should.
It's OK to point a rifle at a target. It's not OK to point a rifle at a target that is across a public highway from you.
Similarly I believe that while in Arizona it is OK to carry a weapon in public, it should be illegal to take any action with that weapon which
escalates the potential for violence.
I'm not arguing that Arizona should banish guns from public. I'm saying that they should insist that the bearing of those guns continue to respect
certain codes of conduct, and that people who engage in behaviors where being armed greatly increases the potential for otherwise unlikely violence
should be asked to just have the common sense not to carry it on them while they're at that. I assume that Arizona expects people to leave their guns
outside when they go into court, am I correct? That's my point.
So, if I am investigating a noise in my house that I suspect is a break-in, I must leave my weapon beside my bed?
Not at all. I have accidentally demonstrated the universal nature of the problem with language. There would naturally have to be very very careful
testing of the phrasing to make sure that situation and others are protected, because you're in harms way there.
Now on the other hand if you go down to the border in a conscious effort to be in the presence of a crime that you can't stop and carries a fairly
small chance of becoming immediately violent in most cases, carrying a gun is going to hurt more than it helps. Leave it in the car at the very least,
and if you see armed men coming by all means keep your weapon handy as you remove yourself from harms way.
Going out there and carrying a weapon around is inviting a confrontation. People do this goofy macho thing. There were threats of violence just in
reaction to the minute men taking lawn chairs and binoculars. When weapons come into the picture, it only escalates things.
The state is within its authority to regulate dangerous conduct. There is NOTHING discriminatory about restricting dangerous conduct engaged in by the
minute men, although I agree that there would be constitutional questions to passing a law specifically against the group.
Our democratic process should take responsibility for this so that the assistance of private individuals is not necessary- whether or not they are
making arrests is not the issue- they're putting themselves in the midst of criminal activity in an effort to bring about an end to it, and in the
process they are co-contributors to a dangerous situation.
The government can and should restrict that danger and address the problem as it is capable of doing.