Who Would Shoot a 9 Year-Old Girl in the Face?

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From the Presente.org news release:

Nine-year-old Brisenia Flores was murdered in her home in Arivaca, Arizona in May 2009. She pleaded, “Please don’t shoot me,” right before she was shot — point blank, in the face — by a member of the Minutemen American Defense Corps (MAD)1

The alleged mastermind behind Brisenia’s murder, Shawna Forde, has publicly represented anti-Latino hate groups including the Minutemen and the Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform (FAIR). Forde is currently on trial in Arizona for the murder of Brisenia and her father, Raul. As we speak, the jury is deliberating and will return a verdict within days, or hours.

Our community is waiting on justice for Brisenia.

Her murder represents the violence that follows when hateful and dehumanizing rhetoric and the groups that promote it goes unchecked.

Brisenia’s story has been largely ignored in the mainstream media, but her life has galvanized people around the country to speak out against hate violence towards Latinos. We at Presente designed a poster to honor Brisenia’s memory, and to send a statement that we want justice.

Together, let’s take a stand against anti-Latino violence and the hatred that ruins lives. Please download this memorial poster, display it proudly, and share it with your friends and family:

http://act.presente.org/go/240?akid=301.96974.MS_DyK&t=4

Brisenia’s murder follows the mainstreaming of the most dangerous strands of hatred in the United States. The extremist groups like those that Shawna Forde represented publicly are the same groups responsible for hateful laws like Arizona’s SB1070, attempts to repeal birth-right citizenship for babies born in the U.S. and the dehumanization of immigrants and Latinos.

It’s up to each of us to stand up against anti-Latino violence everywhere. By displaying this poster and helping people learn about the story of this amazing girl and her tragic murder, you can help build resolve to end the discrimination and violence that took Brisenia’s life.

Click here to take a stand and help us share this little girl’s story by spreading her image far and wide:

http://act.presente.org/go/240?akid=301.96974.MS_DyK&t=6

We will send out an update as soon as we the jury comes back with a verdict. Until then, we’re all waiting for justice.

Thank you y ¡adelante!

Joaquin, Laurie, Favianna, Roberto & the rest of the Presente.org team

Resources

1. “Slain Girl Pleaded for Her Life, Mom Testifies at Militia Leader’s Trial” AOL.com, 1/28/11
http://act.presente.org/go/244?akid=301.96974.MS_DyK&t=8

“Don’t bet against America.”

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—President Bill Clinton in a speech at the Center for American Progress Action Fund on 4/16/2010.

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From our friends at ThinkProgress:

Fifteen years ago today, anti-government extremist Timothy McVeigh blew up a truck laden with 5,000 pounds of explosives outside the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people and injuring more than 680 in the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil before 9/11. In a speech at the Center for American Progress Action Fund on Friday, former President Bill Clinton spoke of this pivotal moment in his presidency and “drew parallels between the antigovernment tone that preceded that devastating attack and the political tumult of today.” “Before the bombing occurred, there was a sort of fever in America,” Clinton recalled. “The fabric of American life had been unraveling, more and more people who had a hard time figuring out where they fit in. … It is true that we see some of that today.” Speaking before Clinton, Center for American Progress Action Fund President John Podesta noted that while dissent is “patriotic” and should be encouraged, “when any leader promotes fear-mongering or distortions, it can create a climate where violence is more imaginable.” Given the disturbing uptick in anti-government extremism, Clinton noted that it takes only one Timothy McVeigh to cause extreme violence and urged leaders in politics and the media to be more responsible with their rhetoric. “Words have consequences as much as actions do, and what we advocate, commensurate with our position and our responsibility, we have to take responsibility for,” Clinton said, adding, “Don’t bet against America.”

There’s more…

Tea Party Leader Suggested Shooting Hispanics

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He was married to a Hispanic woman and is being sought by the police. Via TPM:

Police are searching for a local Tea Party leader in Ohio who is wanted for violating a temporary protection order. Meanwhile, speakers at a Tea Party rally organized by the man, Brian “Sonny” Thomas, have pulled out after he suggested in a tweet that he wanted to shoot Hispanic immigrants — then blaming it on a Bee Gees song.

Thomas is the founder and president of the Springboro Tea Party in southwest Ohio. He faces a misdemeanor charge after recently going to the home of the mother of his son, in violation of a protection order. The woman had previously told police that their son had returned from Thomas’s home with bruises.

There’s more…

Why Did Extremist Groups Surge in ’09?

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Could it have anything to do with the ’08 election results?

Today, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) released its annual “Year in Hate and Extremism” report. The number of extremist groups in the United States exploded in 2009 as broad-based populist anger at political, demographic and economic changes in America ignited an explosion of new extremist groups and activism across the nation.

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(Please share this with others).