June 07, 2007
Bad boys and bureaucrats. A deadly duo?
I wrote a post yesterday about the arrest of the "No Guns" activist for selling guns, and I now see that LA Weekly has new story titled "Hector Marroquin's Revenge -- Feds arrest "No Guns" activist for selling guns, while L.A. politicians duck."
I also see that Patterico has been covering the Marrquin story for a long time, and in his latest post he links and discusses the "July 2005 puff piece naively portraying Marroquin as a good guy who had turned his life around," how the LA Times got "suckered," and the history of hos this criminal leader ingratiated himself with the high and mighty.
Not that there weren't warning signs -- including an especially gruesome incident involving his daughter, the treasurer of No Guns:
In an earlier LA Weekly report, the failure to prosecute the daughter was attributed to politics:Police arrested Charleeda in 2001 after she and fellow gang members admitted dumping the badly mutilated body of a young man -- shot at close range in the head at No Guns' offices -- near her dad's property in San Bernardino. The victim was found with his hands and genitals badly burned.The young man's brains had been "spattered on a wall" of the No Guns office, but the gang members present (and the mother of one of them) said the young man, who was called "Clumsy," had died playing Russian Roulette. They apparently didn't explain why the carpet was "missing a large cutout area" -- or why "Charleeda Marroquin drove Clumsy's body to a remote area, where she and other gang members burned his genitals and lower extremities -- reasons unknown."
....perhaps the most unsettling case, for a bunch calling themselves No Guns, involves Charleeda Marroquin, an admitted member of the Hawthorne Lil Watts gang who was appointed treasurer of No Guns by her father. Police arrested Charleeda in 2001 after she and fellow gang members admitted dumping the badly mutilated body of a young man -- shot at close range in the head at No Guns' offices -- near her dad's property in San Bernardino. The victim was found with his hands and genitals badly burned. Local authorities ruled the grisly incident an accidental suicide while the coroner ruled it a homicide. Charleeda was arrested for arson for the postdeath mutilation, but troubled Hawthorne police, pointing to Marroquin's City Hall connections, say the San Bernardino District Attorney refused to prosecute her because it was "too political."Aside from being a darling of the bureaucracy, Marroquin has shown himself quick to sue people who dared to criticize him:
....some law enforcement officials believed that Marroquin was a front man for the Mexican Mafia prison gang and that NO GUNS was a facade for illegal activity and a channel for public funds.The man Marroquin sued, retired Sergeant Richard Valdemar, describes himself thusly:
I am a Hispanic, with 33+ years as a Deputy Sheriff and Gang Expert in Los Angeles. Of the three "Super Gangs" spawned in the streets of Los Angeles, "Florencia 13", "18th Street", and "Mara Salvatrucha 13", are composed primarily of illegal immigrants. These are not the poor working people of 20 years ago.Yes, and it appears that those who dare to speak out run the risk of getting sued by the people they speak out against -- especially when the latter are coddled criminals, or outright enemies of the United States.
I'm wondering whether frivolous lawsuits against citizens who speak out aren't part of some awful pattern, and while it's easy enough to blame groups like the ACLU, I wonder whether they're being aided and abetted by government bureaucrats we normally think of as being there to protect the rights of concerned citizens.
In yesterday's Wall Street Journal, Attorney Floyd Abrams wrote an Op Ed about his representation of neighbors who were sued for asking questions about the Islamic Society of Boston. The place has ties to terrorist groups -- and it receives help from the taxpayers:
On May 29 of this year, the potential vulnerability of a plaintiff that misuses the courts to sue for libel once again surfaced when the Islamic Society of Boston abandoned a libel action it had commenced against a number of Boston residents, a Boston newspaper and television station, and Steven Emerson, a recognized expert on terrorism and, in particular, extremist Islamic groups. In all, 17 defendants were named.Solomonia (who has been covering this for a long time) has more.
Anyone see a common thread?
In another incident, a blogger was threatened by a bizarre paramilitary Islamist compound run mostly for ex-convicts by a radical Pakistani group called Muslims of the Americas. The compound was described in account linked by Clayton Cramer:
Islamberg is a branch of Muslims of the Americas Inc., a tax-exempt organization formed in 1980 by Pakistani cleric Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, who refers to himself as "the sixth Sultan Ul Faqr," Gilani, has been directly linked by court documents to Jamaat ul-Fuqra or "community of the impoverished," an organization that seeks to "purify" Islam through violence.The article appears in full at FrontPageMag.com, and the ADL has more on Muslims of the Americas, as does SATP. They have branches all over the place.
But (as I have to keep reminding myself) we're at war with terrorism. (I remind myself of that every time I see a taxpayer-funded school bus transporting American kids into my local Saudi Madrassa.)
Anyway, after posting "Springtime in Islamberg," in his blog, blogger Scott Grayban says he received death threats, and reading his account, he does appear to have documented the threat with phone records:
The first call I missed so I listened to my voice mail and a person with perfect English told me to answer the phone on the next ring and that it was very important. The phone rang and I heard chanting of some sort in the back ground and a middle eastern thick accent person started his hate rant to me.So far as I know, he hasn't been sued. Maybe Gilani's group wants to keep a lower profile.
Anyway, the bureaucrats up there may have been forced to remove or at least adjust their blinders. According to a recent UPI piece, "authorities" now "have their eye" on Islamberg:
KINGSTON, N.Y., June 4 (UPI) -- Authorities have their eye on a Muslim commune in New York's Catskill Mountains where neighbors say residents are undergoing military-style training.Tell you what. I'll stick my neck out here and advocate a hardline approach to dealing with these people.
I say, take away their tax exempt status!
I haven't been keeping track of the flying Imams lawsuit as I should, but the research I did originally revealed that they too are drinkers from the public trough. (One of them is a Muslim PAC leader and Democratic Party activist who teaches in a taxpayer-funded "parochial" school. Grrrrr.) Because of such solid "community ties," the bureaucracy can be counted on to protect their rights, not the rights of citizens who speak out.
I agree with this editorial from Investors Business Daily:
If the bureaucracy can't protect us from terrorists, citizens must step in with 24-7 vigilance. That's the price we pay in a post-9/11 world. We can't be afraid to see what we see -- or report it when we see it, even under threat of being sued by Islamist groups or being labeled bigots.The overall picture is not new, as I'm old enough to remember the People's Temple.
For those who don't remember, this was a San Francisco "church" run by Jim Jones which ended in mass murder-suicide of 912 people in Guyana. Because I'm in a hurry, I would have liked to have cited the Wikipedia entry on Jones, but inexplicably, his solid community and bureaucratic ties are not described. It's probably a source of embarrassment to some that Jones was a powerful San Francisco Housing Commissioner, loved and honored by people at the top levels of government:
Jim Jones was once a popular community activist in San Francisco who contributed cash and coordinated volunteers to support both causes and political leaders.Anyone who knew Jones knew that he was a Communist with anti-American views, though. That's why he was so popular in the San Francisco Bay Area.
None of this is to suggest a moral equivalency between Jim Jones and Hector Marroquin, the flying Imams, the guy Daniel Pearl sought to interview before he was beheaded, or the various Saudi madrassas which spread hateful and anti-Semitic rhetoric all over the United States. They come from very different backgrounds, and each would have to be analyzed differently.
My concern is with the support they get from government and from the legal system, because that means my money is helping them.
That doesn't seem fair.
(Of course, my complaint that it doesn't seem fair would probably be seen as hateful, bigoted, and libelous. My unfair tax dollars at work!)
posted by Eric on 06.07.07 at 10:51 AM
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