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June 16, 2009


There can be no question that hate crime violence is on the rise.

The murder of Dr. Tiller during a Sunday service in his church and in front of his family was, by any account, a despicable and heartless act. But to have that followed so closely by the fatal shooting of the guard at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington and then the recent slaughter of a father and his 9 year old daughter here in Arizona is a giant red flag.

All three of these murders were carried out by rightwing extremist who were, no doubt, encouraged and incited by the vitriolic hate spewed daily by the avaricious hatemongers of the media. From the anti-abortionist to the anti-semitic to the anti-immigrant - all demonstrate the same kind of fanaticism usually only associated with the growing supremacist movement.

Probably the most shocking of these atrocities was the recent father/daughter murder here in Arizona. This was an action orchestrated and carried out by Shawna Forde, the leader and founder of a highly controversial, local "Minuteman" organization that patrols the US/Mexican border looking for illegals.

Forde was trying to raise a large amount of money to make her anti-illegal immigrant operation more sophisticated. The group had heard that a hispanic man living in a remote area south of Tucson was an immigrant drug smuggler who probably had large amounts of cash, drugs and weapons on hand. That assumed lure plus the isolated location made him an easy target.

According to a report by the Arizona Republic, published last Saturday, Shawna and two of her male followers dressed as law enforcement officers (which none of them were) and forced their way into the home about 10 miles north of the Mexican border in rural Arivaca.

"This was a planned home invasion where the plan was to kill all the people inside this trailer so there would be no witnesses," Sheriff Clarence Dupnik of Pima County said. "To just kill a 9-year-old girl because she might be a potential witness to me is just one of the most despicable acts that I have heard of."

Ford and all of these lunatics were the kind of rightwing fanatics that believe their cause justifies even murder if the people they kill are, in their minds, the "enemy." And I hold the rightwing media, especially talk radio, responsible for riling up these already unstable individuals. As far as I'm concerned, all of those so-called "hosts" should go to jail right along with the people they incite.

It's also the same kind of fanaticism that drove someone to throw a bomb into the crowd at the world's largest Gay Pride event held this past weekend in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

PinkNews, out of the UK, reported that 21 people were injured and four were taken to the hospital. Of the four people hospitalized, one has serious head trauma and another is in serious condition with multiple injuries. The two others have non-life threatening injuries.

Sao Paulo's Pride event is in its 13th year and despite the ongoing threats from anti-gay extremist, it still drew over 3 million proud revelers from all over the world.

At first, it was thought that someone who was upset at all the noise threw the bomb from a window. But, as parade spokesman Pedro Xavier said, the attack was probably anti-gay because "nobody has a bomb just sitting around at home."

All of these attacks, along with the already proven rising rate of violence against gays throughout the country underscores the necessity for all of us to be cautious and aware of our surroundings whenever we're out and about.

No. We're not going to go cowering back into the closet - that's NOT who we are. But, as I've said in multiple past postings, the more successful we are, the more frustrated and violent our opponents become. So lets all just be careful out there.