Monday, May 30, 2011


Daily Kos Agrees with Right Wing Gun Nuts

One of my Facebook friends is Kathryn Werdal who has been closely following the news of the killing of Jose Guerena by the Pima County Sheriff's Department. Today, Werdal pointed out Daily Kos' take on the incident. From the Daily Kos:
Is the life of one Mexican-American worth less than the lives of others?


After serving honorably twice in Iraq and once in Afghanistan as a U.S. Marine, Jose Guerena got a good job in the Asarco copper mine, 18 miles south of Tucson in Pima County, Arizona. But his shift at the mine was long.

In the hours before he died, Jose had worked a 12-hour-graveyard shift at the Mission Mine. After arriving home, he went to bed. Two hours later at about 9:15 am, his wife, Vanessa, heard noise outside their home and she peered out the window to check. Their older boy, Jose, Jr. was at school, and their younger son, Joel, 4, was with Vanessa as she spotted gun men outside the couple's home. Jose was in the bedroom asleep. Vanessa called, "Jose, Jose, come quickly."

Still groggy and no doubt still tired, Jose came when his wife called.

The couple's concern was evident. Vanessa thought the intruders were part of a home invasion. Two members of her sister-in-law's family, Cynthia and Manny Orozco, were killed last year in their Tucson home.

Hearing the concern in his wife's voice, Jose told Vanessa to hide in a closet with their 4-year-old son. He picked up his AR-15 rifle as is his right in gun-loving Arizona.


Jason Ogan, spokesperson with PCSD, said that when deputies finally entered the home, "Guerena started firing with a long rifle. Deputies fired back, fatally wounding him."

Like much else about this killing, what the official said was an elaborate but transparent lie:


On May 12, seven days after they killed Jose, the Sheriff's office finally admitted the safety was locked and Jose Guerena had not fired.


A photograph? Really? Really. Jose Guerena died because of a picture under his bed that cops interpreted as sympathetic to drug running? That he had guns in his house and body armor, so what? Who in Arizona doesn't? What Marine veteran doesn't?

None of what the cops took from Jose's home was illegal. Where were the drugs they were supposed to find? Where was the drug money? Bet on this: if they'd found anything, anything at all, the cops' official mouthpieces would be shouting it from the rooftops.


Jose died while medics waited outside, prevented by the deputies from entering the home for over an hour after the shooting. They were not permitted to enter the home until they had already learned Jose was dead.


In an interview with the pro-gun, pro-law enforcement ABC affiliate, Sheriff spokesman O'Connor says there were raids on four houses that morning and he admits no drugs or paraphernalia had been found at Jose's house. He also does not connect Jose to the homes where drugs turned up.
The war on drugs has become a war on the freedom in America. Too many police departments have taken on the cowboy/Dirty Harry mentality and are terrorizing the populace.

One report mentions marijuana seized at another house. Is possession of marijuana in any quantity a death sentence? NO. Should it be? NO. There is not a single recorded death from overdose of marijuana. We need a much more reasonable drug enforcement policy and police that respect the rights of the people they supposed serve and protect.

I'm in complete agreement. And frankly, it bothers me to no end that this isn't front page news everywhere, because this should be the type of tragic incident that makes all Americans take a look at our nation-wide pathology that the "Drug War" has become.
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