Before Congresswoman Gifford and others were shot in Tuscon, Arizona , 17 year old Ramses Barron Torres was shot and killed by a bullet originating in Nogales, Arizona. There have been no national moments of silence for the apparently unarmed teenager. No memes speculating on the sanity of the shooter(s) or if violent rhetoric played a role. That’s probably because Ramses Barron Torres is Mexican and was shot by U.S. Border Patrol.These points, made by Maegan La Mala on VivirLatino recently are ones that didn't really occur to me, even though I try to be aware of these sorts inconsistencies on the part of the media as well as the left. The article explores some of the stories around the circumstances surrounding Torres' death. But even if Torres had been throwing rocks, even if he had been on the US side of the border, the shooting was still unjustified. Certainly violent rhetoric played a role in this shooting, as it did in the shooting in Arivaca a year and a half ago.
Border patrol agents, like cops, get away with shootings and other violence on a regular basis. Even Ramos and Compean who were sentenced to prison for shooting at a man on the border (he didn't die), got their sentence commuted by Bush. It will be interesting to see what comes of this shooting. Either way, though, the outcry (as it is reported by the media as well as how it is coming across on the part of activists) is not nearly what it is in response to this shooting in Tucson. Yes, it is different that it was so out of the ordinary and that it was several people who were shot at once, but just because immigrants already live in a state of fear for their lives does not mean it's any less painful or traumatic.