Arizona Passes Private Militia Bill

Last week Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed into law a bill that authorizes herself and future governors to deploy an “Arizona State Guard” under the broadest of circumstances.  Sponsored by Republican State Rep. Jack Harper, the guard is a sort of state militia that can be “activated” to do much of the same work of the National Guard but without ever falling under the umbrella of the federal government.

Harper would like to see the guard established immediately and used to patrol the U.S.-Mexican border for undocumented immigrants.  So would other the backers of the bill including extremists in the nativist movement.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, numerous “Patriot” and other white supremacist-leaning websites are urging people to contact local representatives to push Gov. Brewer to act.  Among those urging Gov. Brewer to act is the leader of an anti-immigrant paramilitary group called Ranch Rescue whose members assaulted two Salvadoran migrants who crossed the border on foot onto a Texas ranch.

It is no surprise that nativists back this private militia bill.  And so far very little has been disclosed concerning what, if any, accountability these private militias will have. 

For example, do these private militias have to abide by civil rights laws?  What about the Bill of Rights?  The quick answer is of course no — that is precisely why they have been created.

 

photo courtesy of jim.greenhill via Flickr

140 comments

LMj Sunshine

Interesting, thank you.

LMj Sunshine

Interesting, thank you.

Gar M.
Gar M.4 years ago

@ Luke J:

He states:We don't need tighter boarder control we just need to outsource more jobs to mexico, that would solve the problem.

I'm not quite sure if he intended sarcasm here or is dead serious. If he's serious, he better take a look at the problems this country faces. Outsourcing jobs in one of the MAIN reasons the USA is in trouble. No jobs, no manufacturing left, no innovation. Easier and cheaper to let another country do it. Many countries now EASILY surpass the US in EVERYTHING. Think about that before you buy foreign products or deal with a company who outsources jobs.

Luke J.
Luke J.4 years ago

Quote "Evidently you people don't get it. This country is at war! The borders NEED to be secured. The government is unwilling (or unable) to seal our borders, so hopefully the SW states have the resolve to do so. Any illegal entry into the US should be viewed as an invasion of our country and dealt with accordingly. Who knows how many Arabs, terrorists, criminals have crossed over into the USA in the past 30 years?

Personally, I'd like to see anyone illegally crossing the border shot on sight or at least imprisoned for life. Watch how fast the problem with illegals disappears if this becomes reality. "

We don't need tighter boarder control we just need to outsource more jobs to mexico, that would solve the problem.

Michelle Dunbar
Missy L.4 years ago

Well said Dylan! We accomodate Spanish speakers more than anyone, which is fine in certain situations, like in hospitals where people really need help. Everywhere there are Spanish interpreters. If you call anywhere, you can press 2 for Spanish. We are beyond fair! My question is, why do we not accomodate the Russians, Ukranians, Vietnamese, Chinese, Germans, whoever else? It just doesn't seem fair. I am a Spanish interpreter, and believe me, I am happy to help. But why not give everyone the same perks?

Dylan E.
Dylan E.4 years ago

Our Attorney General has been convicted guilty of giving thousands of weapons to mexican drug cartels and you people are mad at Patriots who want to defend or borders and stop cartels from coming in? Do you know what the Mexcans do to Guatamalens crossing their border? They kill them. Yet we give our illegals free food, housing, college, and medicaid yet we're still not treating them fairly?

Gar Mosey
Gar M.4 years ago

To Betsy R:

Her comment:
This one is even better. Since 1946, Ohio has had a State Naval Militia. It is a line item in the state budget. They are armed and have small gun boats in Lake Erie. That can only make sense, if the good people of Ohio believe the Canadians are going to invade across Lake Erie. END

Get your facts straight before you post! I live in Ohio within reasonable distance of Lake Erie/Camp Perry. The Naval Militia is a volunteer, unarmed unit serving under the governor of Ohio. It's mission is to keep pleasure boaters out of the live shell impact area of Camp Perry, a military training base for those of you who don't know. They also assist in natural disasters. It also was deactivated after WW2 until 1974 when it was needed again.

Don't ANY of you people on Care2 research your facts before you post? Perhaps you do and modify them to suit your scare or discrimination tactics.

Gar Mosey
Gar M.4 years ago

Evidently you people don't get it. This country is at war! The borders NEED to be secured. The government is unwilling (or unable) to seal our borders, so hopefully the SW states have the resolve to do so. Any illegal entry into the US should be viewed as an invasion of our country and dealt with accordingly. Who knows how many Arabs, terrorists, criminals have crossed over into the USA in the past 30 years?

Personally, I'd like to see anyone illegally crossing the border shot on sight or at least imprisoned for life. Watch how fast the problem with illegals disappears if this becomes reality.

Duncan O'neil
Duncan O'neil5 years ago

Based on the title of this piece, as well as the information, you have been lied to.

The legal action in question did nothing to CREATE a militia in the state of AZ.

Jonathan Y.
Jonathan Y.5 years ago

Dangerous to have an unregulated militia not answerable to the public. That's what Germany got with the Brown-Shirts of pre-Nazi days, and guess what?

Let the professionals do their job. Our Army, Nat'l Guard and FBI are doing just fine at keeping drug violence south of the border. In spite of the civil war in Mexico, no Americans have been killed over here except by crazy militas like M.A.D. who didn't realize they were U.S. citizens because they 'looked like Mexicans.'

I got news for you out-of-state militas, you ignorant Snowbirds - most people in Southern Arizona, California, and New Mexico 'look like Mexicans' because they were here 200 years before we were. Why don't you go back to the Midwest and North where you belong and stay out of our state? YOU are the unwanted immigrants, not the old Vaquero families who have gotten along fine with us cowboys for 300 years.

-raised in Arizona