Land Mines to Stop Mexican Immigrants?: The Radical White Right

The Associated press reports on this white politician running for the U.S. Congress:

The Republican nominee for a New Mexico congressional seat suggested during a radio interview that the United States could place land mines along the Mexican border to secure the international boundary. …. mine the border, install barbed wire and post signs directing would-be border jumpers to cross legally at designated checkpoints.

He later said he was reporting on a suggestion he had heard on the campaign. Yet, his comment did not get national attention and did not alienate Republican voters, as he won the Republican nomination. This radical-right stuff is getting so far out, it takes one’s breath away. Over at Dailykos, Jake McIntyre comments:

Anti-personnel land mines are arbitrary, frighteningly random dealers of death condemned by the vast majority of nations. (A total of 156 countries have signed the Ottawa Treaty completely banning their use, although the US is, sadly, not one of them.) Land mines kill children as surely as criminals, Americans as surely as Mexicans; they lay in place for decades, long after their deployment is forgotten… Asking for land mines to be placed in the ground of your own state? … It strikes me as a conscious decision to turn one’s back on civilization….

Evidently, some in the white radical-right community have framed Mexican workers and families in such extremist terms as “not human” that they do not consider killing them—women, children, and men—a significant human, ethical, and moral problem. Almost daily the media are now filled with chilling authoritarian or militaristic commentary that is all too close to what was going on in Germany just prior to, and during, the rise of the Nazis in the 1920s and 1930s. It does not take much these days to frighten some (influential and other) whites over into this kind of hyper-hostile targeting of some human beings as no longer human.


    • ThirtyNine4Ever

      Yeah Will, this sure doesn’t look good.
      I don’t like when people over-compare current events to Nazi Germany, but in this case, dead on…. dead on….

    • hi,
      another way of addressing the question about extreme behavior of some whites is to say that they can make those comments and not suffer the same consequences that comparable comments by nonwhites would.

  1. Kristen

    This is devastating. Passing this “suggestion” off as something he heard is extremely irresponsible.

    And to claim that this kind of measure would encourage people to do migration “the right way” is completely idiotic. We’re talking about land mines which do only one of two things when you encounter them – maim or kill. I’m not one for punitive measures on migrant workers of any sort, but this goes waaay beyond the crime & punishment perspective usually used in the U.S., where people supposedly get a “fair trial,” to one of blatant warfare. Unbelievable.

    I am so disturbed by this “idea” being even aired that I can’t believe I’m even here commenting on it. It turns my stomach.

    You know, too, this kind of “suggestion” is what happens when people sit around and talk about ideas and theory completely divorced from the realities of life – well, anyone’s life beyond their own. And that’s the bread and butter of whites historically – devising extremely inhumane, oppressive strategies and systems in the name of efficiency or profit or self-interest.

  2. only an idiot would make or repeat such vulgar, inhumane and quasi-nazi statement, yet this idiot will run for a congressional seat in new mexico on the republican ticket. where is the limit? does the republican party want to be associated with such a politician?

  3. Maria

    I agree. It is so disheartened to hear a congressional candidate is making a statement about putting landmines on the border! Once violent thinking has progressed to this point you can’t take it back, and then there is action. It is shocking, irresponsible, outrageous, and dangerous.

  4. Maria

    I thought I posted earlier but it didn’t show up. I just wanted to say that I think this is so disheartening. Thoughts of putting land mines on the border lead to action. Is the U.S. on the brink of committing another tragic government sponsored, publicly supported racial atrocity? Our history is full of shameful examples. This dehumanization of Latinos is getting us closer. What can we do?


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