How Can The Death Of A Man Bring Cheers?

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The room erupted in cheers after all verdicts were read and deputy sheriffs had to restrain members of the defendants' families from rushing to them until after the jury had been dismissed.Stan Standard Speaker article

What would make one cheer when a man was murdered?  In the case of Luis Ramirez those that caused his death, and their families, seem to have little remorse for their actions.  It is one thing to be glad you are not going to jail and an entirely different thing to celebrate in front of those people who loved the man you helped kill.

People in Shenandoah celebrated, went out into the streets and rejoiced after an all-white jury found Brandon J. Piekarsky, 17, and Derrick M. Donchak, 19, guilty of lesser charges and acquitted them of criminal homicide and aggravated assault. from Vivir Latino

No matter how you slice it Luis Ramirez was provoked and beaten to death by a group of young men in Shenandoah, PA. However, anti-migrant agitators, more specifically those in and around Shenandoah, made it clear that they would not view this death from the eyes of those who loved him. Instead this incident became reason to protest against undocumented migrants and to support a group of white young adults who seem to bring little value to this world. This is a classic "protect our own" story and protect their own this town surely did.

For many years now the anti-migrant crowds have been harvesting supporters and making it clear through rallies and the internet that they are willing to do whatever is necessary to remove undocumented migrants.  To them there is no tragedy here only a man who should have stayed home.

From Utah's Desert News, Attacks against Hispanics rising:

Experts say the increase in violence targeting Hispanics nationally is likely even larger because hate crimes are underreported, especially in immigrant communities where residents have an inherent distrust of law enforcement agencies. They caution, however, that the FBI statistics are drawn from local law enforcement agencies, which have widely disparate standards for labeling crimes as hate crimes.

Not only did these teens have white privilege on their side, but one of their mothers is dating a Shenandoah officer. Apparently this officer offered them support rather than arrest them. These teens were coached to get their stories straight and even though this officer knew they had broken the law they were not arrested until thirteen days later. If Ramirez and his friends had been the aggressors they would have been taken straight to jail that evening.

From The Morning Call, Defense rests in slaying trial; closing statements set for tomorrow:

In the days after the incident, local police were criticized for the time it took them to file charges, and county detectives took over the investigation. Charges were filed July 25 -- 13 days after the incident. The U.S. Justice Department and FBI later opened an investigation into the case.
We can easily play the "shoe on the other foot" scenario and see that these people would not react the same way had this story been reversed.  If any of the people supporting these white youth had one of their loved one's killed in the same manner they'd be hysterical.  This is a "victory" because the teens beat an undocumented Mexican man. Because of Ramirez's status and national origin the story became an "us versus them" as well as a "protect our own" situation.  The anti-migrant agitators couldn't be more happy with the results.

The verdict would actually make more sense if the teens had been acquitted of all charges. In that case, the implication is that the boys had nothing to do with the fight or Ramirez's death. Instead, by convicting them of a lesser charge (simple assault), the jury basically said, "Yeah, you walloped the guy, and he died, but we don't think you should do time. It's not like he was anybody important." A Latino Rodney King? from Huffington Post

Many whites in the community empathized with the young men as if they were their own children. How do you have empathy for a drunken rogue group of young adults who go around looking for trouble? These kids more than likely have done many other things for which there is no reason to cheer.

During the trial neither Piekarsky nor Donchak took the stand. The alternate juror said she would have felt more sympathy for them if they had. "if they would have stuck those boys on, my heart would have, if I would have seen remorse, as a mother and as a woman, my heart would have went out," Holopirek added. link

So, to make a group cheer after a man is killed just make sure the dead man is a minority. I wonder if the teens went out drinking to celebrate the verdict.


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2 Comments

janna said:

I've been thinking a lot about Crystal Dillman, Luis' fiance & mother of his children, and how awful it must be for her to live there. It makes me sick that the verdict essentially condones the killing of Mexicans (or anyone "different"). This sets such a dangerous precedent, putting any latino walking down the street at risk for attack without the threat of any serious repercussions for the aggressors. I fear for those I know, whose only crime is working, and I hurt for Crystal and can only imagine the helpless rage she must feel.

Dee said:

Chris,
This is the most heart-breaking crime. It illustrates how the ANTI Immigration Reformers like Dobbs and Beck and built up the hate for Latinos in our country to this crescendo of violence. They have poisoned our young people's minds. The Ramirez case, the Marcelo Lucero case and the Chilean student case all illustrate how young and feeble minds have been poisoned to hate all Latinos. No wonder the Hate Crimes have increased by 40%.

The Latinos people of Shenandoah are living in fear with their corrupt police department and their atmosphere of hate and intolerance.

This is scary bad. Their attitudes remind me of those of Nazi Germany towards the Jews. It is awful!!

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This page contains a single entry by chris published on May 10, 2009 9:00 PM.

Remembering Marcello Lucero: Pro-Migrant SanctuarySphere was the previous entry in this blog.

It's Ok To Kill Some People: Pro-Migrant SanctuarySphere is the next entry in this blog.

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