July 2, 2010
We are under siege! We are at war! We are…
Well, we’re here.
If you listen to talk radio, watch Fox, or cruise through the ocean of conservative blogs, you’d think America is about to be undone from within by the sociocommunazi conspiracy led by Kenyan-born President Obama and his army of Media Matters, MSNBC, and the gay agenda. Everything you know is about to come crashing down as some vague plan comes to fruition.
Case in point… yesterday, my city was apparently besieged by Mexican drug cartels. As Glenn Beck pointed out some time ago, the Mexican socialists are just waiting to take over Laredo, and yesterday, it hit the fan.
Gun fights erupted downtown. A standoff at two ranches just miles from my house saw a battle not seen outside a John Woo movie. People were evacuated and conservatives throughout the country quickly called for Obama to secure the borders and keep Los Zetas out of our country by any means possible… even if it meant flattening northern Mexico with missiles.
Except, of course, Laredo, Texas is still in one piece.
Why did the right-wing blogosphere fall for this crap, a story so ridiculous that even Glenn “Nostradumbass” Beck called it false early in its life?
Because it fit the narrative. Hey, they’re brown. They’re foreign. Half of them look Mexican. They can’t even talk good English down there. This is ‘merica! Of course they’d have old-style shootouts in the streets. After all, with the cartel wars in Mexico, violence is constantly spilling over, right? Just look at this list of reports from the border and you’d be freaked out, too!
And, of course, all of these points are either misread or otherwise utterly stupid.
The violence reported in Nuevo Laredo and Monterrey is occurring in Mexico, but unless we annexed the state of Tamaulipas in the last few weeks, that doesn’t affect Texas. In fact, border violence, as reported by the FBI, has gone down. Obama’s even deported more people than Bush did in any one year.
Okay, but Laredo is a massive port for drug smuggling, right?
Yes, but only because it’s also the largest inland port in the country. It’s like saying Oklahoma has a tornado problem we must address and not even go into the fact that the state is in Tornado Alley.
And let me let you in on a little secret, something many people outside Webb County don’t realize…
The gangs are fighting each other in Mexico, not civilians.
As it happens here in Laredo, too, the gangs know that if they go after civilians, if they start attacking the people who have nothing to do with drugs, action will be taken against them. During that massive shootout that killed fifty, people were warned to remain out of the streets. The cops left. And the cartels fought. They killed each other, and everything went back to normal.
That’s the border that exists. That’s the real one. Yes, there are casualties, but for the most part, the cartels and the gangs keep to themselves. In a sick, twisted way, it’s a business arrangement. They’re armed enough to be a threat, but not so armed that they couldn’t suffer significant casualties.
And that’s why the violence won’t spill over any time soon. It sucks that we can’t stomp them out but they pose a significant enough threat to warrant this kind of power.
So please, next time you hear about border violence “spilling over,” remember that these gangs have enough to deal with without involving the U.S. military.
Links for tomorrow. Right now, I’ve got to build an ocean liner out of toothpicks while balancing a flaming bear on my nose.