MISGUIDED "MINUTEMEN"

I was in Arizona last week, right on the Mexican border. And let me tell you, a whole bunch of folks are about to make asses of themselves there on Friday.border-patrol-agent.jpg2,200 federal agents are assigned to keep watch over the 260-mile stretch of border known as the "Tucson Sector," which covers pretty much the entire state, except for Yuma. And those agents do a pretty bang-up job, nabbing about a half-million aliens every year. (Compare that to a big city cop, many of whom only make an arrest every few weeks.)But there's only so much those 2,200 can do. Hundreds of thousands -- if not millions -- of people illegally enter the country through the Tucson Sector every year.So a team of geniuses calling themselves the Minuteman Project have decided that they are going to start policing the border on their own. Starting on April Fool's Day, the Project will disperse an estimated 1,000 volunteers to a slice of the border near Tombstone.Now, the Minutemen says they'll only be "observing" and "reporting" the movements of illegals. This is "not a call to arms," the group swears. But if you think, in that part of the world, that any organization calling itself a "grassroots effort to bring Americans to the defense of their homeland" is going to be gunless, you need to get off of the peyote. Of course the Minutemen are going to be packing heat.And so will the smugglers. Since October, 180 Border Patrol agents have been assaulted by the "coyotes" who haul people north. That includes 14 shootings and 20 attempts to run agents over.Remember, those are attempts on federal agents' lives. Do you think the coyotes will have even the slightest of doubts about pulling the trigger on some self-proclaimed defender of liberty? We all know the answer: hell, no.But the Minutemen are going to be doing more than just endangering themselves. They're going to be reducing the effectiveness of the Tucson Sector agents, too. Those agents are trained to stop any unknown vehicles sitting on the border line -- which, for the month of April, is going to include a whole bunch of Minutemen. So that will mean less time actually going after illegals. The agents are also trackers, used to picking up fresh tire treads and footprints -- and follow them to coyote-led groups. That's going to be a whole lot harder, with so many Minutemen messing up the trails.Clearly, these agents, they need help. They're absolutely overwhelmed by the tide of immigrants pouring into this country. Maybe this little bit of political theater will shame DC into hiring a whole lot more agents, and significantly upping the amount spent on border security. If that's the case, then the Minutemen have done something right. But in the meantime, a whole of people are going to get hurt in the process.THERE'S MORE: "The Homeland Security Department will assign more than 500 additional patrol agents to the porous Arizona border," the AP is reporting. "About 155 agents will be immediately sent to Arizona... More than 370 additional agents -- all new trainees -- will be permanently assigned to the Arizona border throughout the year." Good stuff.

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