Su Rancho Es Mi Rancho
Reading the newspapers, I wonder which straw will break the camel’s back when it comes to illegal immigration. What will finally cause Americans to rise up and take back their country? The tenth family killed by an illegal-alien drunk driver? The 100th housewife butchered by an illegal-alien murderer? Or the next lawsuit that awards damages to illegal aliens after they have trespassed and vandalized a citizen’s property?
It’s happened again. Sixteen illegals, represented by the Mexican-American Legal Defense Fund, sued rancher Roger Barnett in federal court for $32 million. In 2004, he collared the border jumpers and held them at gunpoint on his Cross Rail Ranch near Douglas, Arizona, until the Border Patrol arrived. One of them was a previously deported dope dealer. Since 1998, he has detained 12,000 for the Border Patrol. Illegals have trashed his property, killed livestock, stolen trucks, and even broken into his home. Because they kept wrecking an 8,000-gallon water tank, he installed a faucet so they could get something to drink.
Still, in February, the jury in the case awarded four of the plaintiffs a total of $78,000: $7,500 apiece for two of them because Barnett inflicted “emotional distress,” $1,400 each for two more because of his “assault,” and $60,000 in punitive damages. Barnett considers this an “80 percent victory” because he was not held liable on the most serious and ridiculous charges. His lawyers will appeal.
Barnett isn’t the first victim of the leftist litigation lobby. In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center used the courts to steal Casey Nethercott’s ranch because he, too, made the mistake of opposing the Reconquista.
As justly outraged as Americans are when they hear about these cases, what they don’t seem to get is that MALDEF, the SPLC, and their army of plaintiffs are waging war against them. Lawyers for illegals are waging war to undermine immigration control and even the property rights of Americans who live along the border. The plaintiffs are waging war in the streets by driving drunk and murdering cops, husbands, wives, and even children. Turn on the History Channel’s Gangland on any given night, and you’re likely to see the gory, violent stories of illegal-immigrant gangs. And those gangs don’t merely operate in major cities. MS-13, the Salvadoran gang, reached into Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, near the sleepy town of Woodstock, to murder a former member turned state’s witness.
But back to the border. In 1999, Pat Buchanan visited 82-year-old rancher Theresa Murray in Douglas, Arizona, and described his visit this way: “Her ranch house was surrounded by a seven-foot chain-link fence that was topped with coils of razor wire. Every door and window had bars on it and was wired to an alarm. Mrs. Murray sleeps with a .32 caliber pistol on her head table, because she has been burglarized thirty times. Her guard dogs are dead; they bled to death when someone tossed meat containing chopped glass over her fence.”
“Theresa Murray is living out her life inside a maximum security prison in her own home, in her own country,” Buchanan wrote in The Death of the West, “because her government lacks the moral courage to do its duty and defend the borders of the United States of America.”
Another rancher in Douglas, Richard Kozak, was forced to defend his home from illegal-alien drug smugglers. As the Arizona Star reported in 2004, Kozak finally fought back after watching them traverse his property for two years. They attacked his home, hitting it with more than 30 rounds of AK-47 and pistol fire, and then burned a trailer on his property.
These are not the stories MALDEF and the SPLC want Americans to hear. They tell the story differently. The illegals (or “undocumented immigrants,” as they insist) are merely oppressed and beleaguered campesinos just passing through, hoping for a drink of water and perhaps a small meal in return for a ready smile. They are here, after all, to do the jobs Americans won’t do.
Everyone with half a brain knows this isn’t true. The judges know it. The juries know it. Even the SPLC and MALDEF know it. The question is, why do the judges and juries keep surrendering to the legalized theft these anti-American revolutionaries perpetrate? The answer is clear: white guilt created by the complete loss of loyalty to country, kith, and kin.
The “antiracist” meme running through liberal American Christianity tells us that we must not object to teaching children in foreign languages, must not oppose welfare and other public subsidies for illegals, and, ultimately, must not resist the invasion from the South. Until we realize that what we have is worth defending, we will continue to fall prey to the lie that being an American and a Christian means we must surrender our country to foreigners.
Even if a rancher “wins” in court, every lawsuit that he is forced to fight is a victory for our enemies. One day, Americans will awaken to a country in which the last battle is over. And they will have lost the war.
This article first appeared in the April 2009 issue of Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture.