BY LINDA BENTLEY | JUNE 9, 2010
Thousands brave blistering heat to support the rule of law
Phoenix Rising rally drew people from across the country
PHOENIX – The heat was brutal in downtown Phoenix on Saturday, but that didn’t keep a couple of thousand citizens from all over the country, including people from as far away as New Jersey, from attending the Phoenix Rising rally at Wesley Bolin Park to show their support for Arizona, passage of Senate Bill 1070 and the rule of law.
Elizabeth Okon flew in from Wisconsin to support Arizona’s SB 1070, which has become the nation’s line in the sand against illegal immigration.
Okon spoke during Saturday’s rally to tell the crowd about her husband Jason, who was awarded the bronze star for valor for his deeds while serving in Iraq, only to be stabbed and nearly killed in the front yard of their Phoenix home by Armando Martinez Lozano, an illegal alien from Mexico.
As Jason Okon lay in the hospital in a coma, neighbors Al and Stacey Fernandez took in the Okon family, as well as Jason when he was released from the hospital.
They blame the city of Phoenix, Mayor Phil Gordon and his sanctuary policies for what happened.
In January 2008, after pleading guilty to aggravated assault, Lozano was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Ted Hayes, who has advocated on behalf of the homeless and downtrodden for decades and has rallied in support of former border agents Nacho Ramos and Jose Compean, arrived from Los Angeles, representing America’s Black Shield (ABS).
Hayes says, “Politicians continue to reward illegal criminals with taxpayers’ money and benefits while causing genocide to black communities,” citing blacks have been taxed but not represented by their elected officials.
He says African Americans need to realize what’s happened to the jobs in their communities and step up to the plate and see through “the unfinished business of our long march from the devastating effects of chattel slavery,” instead of passively watching illegal aliens “highjack” the civil rights movement.
On ABS’s website, Hayes wrote, “Despite our grievances at the bottom of U.S. society, we still have a solemn duty in the sight of God to resist the return of slavery because we once were chattel slaves in this land.
“American blacks have the high moral ground to determine the outcome to this matter, because we owe it to those 600,000 plus young white men, and the thousands of black men who horribly died (President Abraham Lincoln included) and were wounded for life to end slavery.
“We owe it to all the abolitionist, civil rights leaders and military veterans to stand up to this invasion by illegal immigrants.
“In fact, I am utilizing every opportunity to defend our civil and constitutional rights and abolish the neo-slavery in America.
“To not do so, we American blacks are betraying our fore parents and all that they lived and died for.”
Joe Loya, Monica Ramos’ father and Nacho Ramos’ father-in-law drove in from Texas to speak at the rally.
Glen Spencer of American Border Patrol, whose property abuts the Arizona/Mexico border, was there with a display of aerial photos and videos he’s taken along the border showing large expanses with either no or ineffective barriers.
Carmen Morales flew in from New Jersey. As a naturalized citizen originally from Mexico, Morales stressed the fact that all Hispanics are not opposed to SB 1070 and what it means to become an American.
Al Garza, founder and president of Patriot's Coalition, drove up from Tucson and said the escalating violence along our border must be stopped.
Garza believes renewed talks of amnesty is currently fueling an already out of control invasion from the south with tens of thousands illegally crossing our border, “creating mischief and engaging in criminal behavior.”
Laura Leighton, who assisted in bringing Tucson Unified School District’s Raza (Race) Studies program to light and getting legislation introduced and passed to cease funding the anti-American, anti-white curriculum in Arizona’s public schools, also rode in from Tucson.
Leighton contributed to the recently released book by Dave Gibson titled, “Replacing Americans: The Deadly Consequences of an Open Border With Mexico,” which is available online in paperback from both Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com.
The book details the dire consequences of illegal immigration, the stark cultural differences between the United States and Mexico and the not-so-hidden agendas of both the government and private sector.
While it offers solutions, the book warns if illegal immigration is not taken seriously and is left unchecked, America is in danger of becoming a third world nation.
San Diego Minutemen founder Jeff Schwilk was at the rally to show his support for Arizona and passage of SB 1070.
Schwilk said the Costa Mesa, Calif. City Council recently passed a resolution declaring Costa Mesa a “Rule of Law City,” in response to Arizona’s SB 1070 and Los Angeles’ resolution to boycott Arizona for favoring the rule of law over illegal immigration.
Hundreds of motorcyclists from several groups, many of whom are veterans, arrived at the rally with an organized double circling of Wesley Bolin Park and the state capitol, to show their support for SB 1070 and the state’s efforts to curtail illegal immigration.
And while Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, and former U.S. Representative Tom Tancredo from Colorado, pioneers in the fight to curb illegal immigration, were greeted by an appreciative crowd, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio seemed to be the man of the hour.
Arpaio excoriated elected officials that opposed SB 1070, noting they all took an oath of office.
Arpaio said he’s going to enforce the law but he’s not going to turn those who violate the new law over to the feds. Instead, he said he’ll be turning them over to himself – to his jail.
Although there weren’t as many people carrying signs at this rally, there were several holding up signs saying, “We Support Sheriff Joe,” “We Love Sheriff Joe” and “Sheriff Joe for President,”as Arpaio spoke, after which the crowd sang “Happy Birthday” to Arpaio, who will turn 78 next Monday.
Pearce says his work isn’t done and he plans to introduce legislation next session to stop the unconstitutional giveaway of citizenship to children born to illegal aliens, commonly referred to as “anchor babies.”