Minuteman Shawna Forde: Poster Girl For Arizona Immigration Law Battle

A militia wet dream.
It was only a matter of time before ex-Seattle prostitute and accused double-murderer Shawna Forde became a symbol in the national controversy over Arizona's intimidating new SB 1070 Hispanic shakedown law--a symbol to both sides.

Opponents of the law cite ex-Minuteman leader Forde, awaiting trial for allegedly murdering a Mexican man and his 9-year-old daughter in the Arizona desert last year, as representative of the anti-Mexican mindset that leads to reactionary lawmaking. While Congress and the White House are culpable for lacking the backbone to tackle immigration reform, a state statute that allows police to single out a race of people to be stopped and asked Gestapo-like for their papers is an aberrant reaction--a lopsided law that Forde would see as balancing the rights of white folk.

Supporters see passage of the stop-and-shake law as an invitation to ramp up their Forde-style military assault on border jumpers--party time for Minutemen. One group, the Cochise County Militia (CCM), has just announced it is reforming itself into a local Blackwater--style organization--something Forde, according to what her brother told Seattle Weekly last year--envisioned for her Minutemen American Defense group, MAD. She at times also referred to herself as the "Delta Force" leader. According to Southern Poverty Law Center, CCM's founder, Bill Davis, just told supporters via email that his Tombstone, Ariz.-based militia will be forming a private military company, which is "completely legal!!!"

Davis said he prefers combat veterans for his venture but will consider others. There is no pay. "We can be considered paramilitary, but not vigilantes, mercenaries, etc.," Davis wrote in the email. That's in sharp contrast to his website's discussion of weapons, which says that "we don't want to appear as a para-military group in any way."

Actually, the website's contrast is much sharper. "Thirsty Illegals Are Just Dying To Be Caught," it says over photos of men armed with combat rifles. And in a newsletter, Davis outlines some of his rules of engagement, including: "Be polite...be professional...be ready to kill all you Meet!" Or as Forde might add, at least the "filthy" brown ones.

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