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Thursday, May 03, 2007


Right-wing violence

An organizer for the ANSWER Coalition was assaulted by a member of the Minutemen while setting up for the May 1 Immigrant Rights Demonstration in Washington, D.C., an assault serious enough to result in his arrest. The Minuteman, thanks to abundant exposure on Lou Dobbs, Anderson Cooper, other CNN shows, and of course other networks, are generally portrayed as some kind of patriots, just eager to "defend the homeland." But, while someone like Lou Dobbs might not hurt a fly, his constant promotion of this cause encourages people like this:
Mr. Froatz was found to be in possession of two knives, one of them with a 12-inch blade - a flare gun and a stun gun. In a subsequent search of his vehicle and apartment, police found what is reported to be a large arsenal of rifles, handguns, ammunition, swords, bows, arrows, machetes, a grenade and grenade launcher. Mr. Froatz also had literature and graphic material depicting violent assaults against immigrants, including pregnant women and children.
Another report adds some other details:
Tyler Joseph Froatz had an arsenal of weapons in his possession: including numerous guns, ammunition, knives, a Molotov cocktail, hand grenade, claw hammer, pepper spray, flare gun, and a 100,000 volt taser gun.
You won't be surprised not to see the word "terrorist" used, even when it's used to describe people who were completely unarmed like the Liberty City 7 or Jose Padilla. As long as you direct your terrorism towards "enemies" of America, you can even be released on bail, like Luis Posada Carriles, the fact that there are outstanding warrants against you on 73 counts of first-degree murder notwithstanding. You can have a stash lots larger than Tyler Joseph Froatz, and you still won't be called a terrorist. Santiago Alvarez, a right-wing ally of Posada, had "dozens of machine guns, rifles, C-4 explosive, dynamite, detonators, a grenade launcher and ammunition." Robert Ferro, another right-wing anti-Cuban terrorist, was caught with "more than 1500 weapons, including 35 machine guns, 130 silencers, two short-barreled rifles, a live hand grenade, a rocket launcher tube and about 89,000 rounds of ammunition"; even he wasn't labeled a terrorist (indeed, his arrest, as far as I can determine, has yet to even be mentioned outside the Southern California and Cuban press; it certainly never made the national news). So you can bet this Minuteman won't be, even though he and his kind live to strike terror into the hearts of people just looking for honest work, and, as we see from the latest assault, to do much more than just inflict psychological damage.

Update: It's now Friday morning, and the only coverage of this incident is on a local TV station and in the "Metro Briefs" section of the Washington Times. Considering that the massacre at Virginia Tech by a far less well armed person is fresh in everyone's mind, this sheds even more light on how the media treats right-wing terrorists.

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