From Naked Capitalism
This video from a Mexican news broadcast… illustrates one of the mechanisms of propaganda: how the non or under reporting of key facts is used to manage popular perceptions. This video appears getting play only on CNN and some local newstations in the US.
The newswoman says the teenagers were throwing rocks, but as you can see from the video, unless they were using slingshots (and there is no evidence of that) they were so far away as to pose no threat to the border cop.
From the comments
This story is big, big news in Mexico, and it comes on the heels of another detainee who died in Border Patrol custody just a couple of weeks ago. And it’s all playing out with Arizona SB1070 as a backdrop.
The video offers ironclad evidence that the Border Patrol is lying.
The politicians here are playing this thing to the hilt to try to draw attention away from their own dismal record on human rights. Meanwhile, politicians in the US, most notably in Arizona, are whipping up anti-Mexican sentiment, trying to project their own failings onto Mexican immigrants who had almost nothing to do with causing Arizona’s severe economic downturn.
It really is a race to the bottom by unscrupulous politicians on both sides of the Rio Grande.
That’s a race no one wins.
One thing that some may not know. Many Border Patrol officers are Latino heritage themselves. This isn’t just about White supremacists, not hardly at all.
The border, as I’ve said before, is mostly out of control. We need a sane immigration policy. Now.
Uhm… I’m a middle aged, overweight guy, and would have no problems throwing rocks that far. As a teen, I did it often in the spillways back home (of that exact size and construction), and could hit a squirrel on the neighboring bank without a problem. The rocks were large enough to be seen in the grainy video, and large enough that (with a proper hit) could stun and/or kill someone. Did you ever hear the story of David and Goliath?
Did the officer need to use deadly force to protect himself? Maybe not. But in the circumstance, he was being pelted with rocks, felt in danger, and probably did fear for his life, since in the video you can see at least one rock did hit him in the head pretty hard. He then fired two shots, and it stopped. Then the kid backs up a bit, gets more rocks, and starts throwing again. The third shot hits the kid, and the rocks stop.
I did a little homework on this. The officer involved is a veteran (over 10 years on the force), has never before had a shooting incodent, and has only one or two minor reprimands on his record for procedural issues. He was not a rookie, and has no history of being a loose cannon or a problem officer. I for one am willing to give the internal investigation a chance to look at this and see where it lands.
One thing that puzzles me: Within seconds of the shots being fired there are cars of Mexican border patrol agents pouring out and shouting at / aiming at the US border agents. Where were they when these “kids” were trying to cross the border, or run back after being caught, and throwing stones? If they were that close, why didn’t they see this and act to intervene before the third shot?
Good points. But, bullets against rocks seem extreme esp. when the thrower is on foreign soil. They don’t have stun guns? Things there are so polarized now that probably most won’t care what the official findings say because they’ve already made up their minds.
I’m sure you’d find it far less extreme after being hit in the head a few times by hard sharp rocks. Rocks to the head can kill if they hit the right spots and are small/sharp/fast enough. We’ve known this from Biblical times and beyond. Guns are the evolutionary off-spring of the sling. Same theory: Get a small hard object to go fast in one direction.
The officers side of the story is now know. He saw the kid who has just thrown rocks at him pulling something small and black from his waist band, which looked like a gun. He was hit in the head with rocks, struggling with a person resisting on the ground, saw this, already had his gun out… Turns out it was a cell phone, but how was he to know that? Had it been a gun, and he delayed, he would be the one shot and dead now.
Simply put, these “kids” had a wrap sheet, were doing something illegal, resisted arrest when they got caught, attacked armed officers from another country, and everyone is surprised when someone got shot?
See my post tomorrow on Arizona. It’s out of control…
I was listening about this on NPR this morning and while this kid didn’t deserve death, he was no angel. Apparently he had been picked up quite a few times for smuggling folks across the border. There are a lot of people at fault in situations like this. The kid, who shouldn’t have been there doing that, the parents who apparently had no control over their kid or the ability to teach him right and wrong, the Mexican Government for helping to drive their country and citizens into such abject poverty that it is practically an anarchy along the border, the border patrol for having their guys go out solo instead of in teams, and then last but not least, the border guard who thought he was a cowboy in the wild west.