Just As Long As They Aren’t White, You Can Put Them In Your Sights
If any of you have wingnut racist relatives, particularly those with serious gun fetishes, you’ve probably heard variations of the “Can Shooting” joke.
That’s the one where the protagonist goes walking around with a high-powered rifle, and is met by his good buddy, who asks him what he’s up to. “Can shooting,” he replies.
“Can shooting? With that thing?”
“Yeah. Africans, Mexicans, Puerto Ricans…”
It’s not a joke any more, as David Neiwert explains:
The recent video of a Minuteman taking potshots at illegal crossers somewhere on the Mexico borderlands was disturbing not so much for the gunfire — the man operating the camera hadn’t seemed to hit anyone — as for the running narration he provided: he positively wanted one of the men to come within his range so he could shoot them. He wanted to kill them.
Now, more video from the same gunman has surfaced, and as Casey Sanchez at HateWatch reports, it appears on this video that he did, in fact, shoot someone crossing the border and kill them:
- The footage starts by showing a single figure wearing a backpack sneaking along a rugged desert trail. A male voice, off-camera, says: “I got him. He’s low crawling. Guy with a backpack. I betcha it’s probably full of dope.”
As the figure crests a hill, the man shouts out loud: “Hey, puto [“faggot”]!” The backpack-wearer ducks behind the far side of a rocky outcropping, then pops up and peers over it a few times. “I got him,” the off-camera voice says. “He’s prairie doggin’ now. He heard me.”
A walkie-talkie crackles and a second male voice that sounds like it’s coming from an off-camera walkie-talkie says: “All right, where you at? What’s your 20?”
“He’s up there on the, uh, smuggler’s trail,” the first voice responds.
The second male voice says, “I don’t have a visual.”
At this point in the video, the backpack-wearing figure begins to slowly emerge from behind the rock outcropping. “You know what? I’m going to take a fucking shot,” the first voice says. There are two flashes of light and the sound of two semi-automatic rifle shots in quick succession. The figure wearing the backpack appears to fly backward and drop from view.
“Oh fuck, I got him dude!’ the first voice says. “I fuckin’ got him!” There is a pause, then the first voice says, “Dude, what are we gonna do?” The voice on the walkie-talkie replies, “Get the shovel, get some lime, and hey, grab me a 12-pack, too, while you’re up there.”
“Roger that,” the first voice answers between chortles. “We fuckin’ nailed him, dude! We fuckin’ nailed him!” That’s where the video ends.
Actually, it now continues on with a shot of a stone-covered grave, and our narrator saying, “Adios, asshole!”
As Sanchez notes, there is no indication whether the video is authentic or not, though it appears to be (while the coda is completely over the top and probably not credible). It does appear that his target was hit.
The SPLC has contacted authorities about the video. Clearly, there needs to be a serious investigation into this — first to determine who is responsible for the video, and second whether or not the killing in it is authentic.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has itself been the target of violence — including arson — in the past, and continues to receive credible threats to this day. But of course the GOP/Media Complex isn’t as scared of (and doesn’t pay anywhere as much attention to) right-wing terrorists as it does to, say, Muslim alleged would-be Sears Tower bombers in Miami.