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Texas Day Laborers Defended from Minutemen

DENTON, TEXAS - One of our ace worker correspondents reports that a group calling itself "Lone Star Minutemen" called a statewide protest against immigrant day laborers in this college town in the early morning of January 7. The so-called "Minutemen," a group that is clearly racist and probably fascist, has previously been known for its publicity stunts on the Arizona border. Lately, their supporters have declared their intention to carry out anti-immigrant actions in Texas' major cities! Undoubtedly, they were disappointed with the response they received in Denton.

North Texas peace activists found out that the racists planned to protest where day laborers regularly gather at the corner of Collins and Ft Worth Drive. They claimed that the January 7 protests were national, with "Twenty-seven, grass roots organizations from nineteen states are participating, to date." The racists raged, "This is a demographic, illegal, invasion of the United States, orchestrated by the Mexican government. They encourage Mexicans to come into the United States illegally and they encourage them to stay here with their forty consulates and bogus Consular Matricula ID cards."

Less than 24 hours before the planned action, peace activists forwarded the racist plans with a simple call, "We need feet on the street in Denton on Saturday morning!" The resulting numbers tell the story:

Among the organizations standing up against racism were: GLAD (Gay and Lesbian Association of Denton), Denton Peace Action, Denton LULAC, and Denton County Democrats. Sandy Swan, secretary of Denton Peace Action commented, "We're here because we oppose racism. These minutemen are an attack against workers. We're here to show solidarity with the day laborers who are just trying to support themselves and their families."

Manual Rendon, President and Founder of the Frisco, Texas LULAC Youth Council, said: "We're here today because the minutemen go against everything we stand for. Vigilantes are not proper border control. If they are so interested in 'protecting America', they should join the military. Their action is more about racism."

Kenna Griffin, Secretary of Denton County Democrats said, "We're here to show support to the people that depend on this day labor site for work. These minutemen assume just because someone is Hispanic that they are illegal. The original minutemen are rolling in their graves."

Arvin Hill, Denton Peace Action member, said: "Minuteman have ties to white-supremacist organizations and individuals. This issue is about scapegoating. The powers that be, the neo-cons, want a wedge issue for the 2006 elections, and immigration is the only remaining issue they have left to exploit."

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