When we lynched Mexicans

This Op-ed by William D. Carrigan and Clive Webb explores some of the lesser known racial tensions that have rocked the past century. Lynching, the act of publicly hanging, burning or flaying of marginalized people, in a spectacle of white supremacy, has historically targeted black people, given the history of slavery in the US. This piece sheds light on the fact that lynchers targeted many other ethnic minorities as well, especially Mexican people. Mexican immigrants in the southern and western US have been uniquely dispossessed, colonized minorities in their own historical lands. Local authorities and deputized citizens were usually the perpetrators of the lynchings of Mexican people. Under the guise of halting revolutionary actions, rangers in Texas and surrounding states have razed entire towns of Mexicans, lynching thousands. This history of racial violence has carried into the 21st century, if not in public records then at the very least, in cultural consciousness.

Read an excerpt of the article written by William D. Carrigan and Clive Webb:

The recent release of a landmark report on the history of lynching in the United States is a welcome contribution to the struggle over American collective memory. Few groups have suffered more systematic mistreatment, abuse and murder than African-Americans, the focus of the report. One dimension of mob violence that is often overlooked, however, is that lynchers targeted many other racial and ethnic minorities in the United States, including Native Americans, Italians, Chinese and, especially, Mexicans. Americans are largely unaware that Mexicans were frequently the targets of lynch mobs, from the mid-19th century until well into the 20th century, second only to African-Americans in the scale and scope of the crimes. more


Advocates push guns as tactic to fight rape on campus

The article written by Alan Schwarz presents an ambivalent view on a extremely heated topic of discussion : should arms be allowed on college campuses... While 41 states have banned the carrying of concealed firearms on campus by law, some advocates feel that lifting this ban could curb the growing rate of sexual assault. However, others feel this could also be a threat due to the increasing rates of alcohol consumption by college students, making students a lot more reckless. 

Read an excerpt of the article written by ALAN SCHWARZ:

As gun rights advocates push to legalize firearms on college campuses, an argument is taking shape: Arming female students will help reduce sexual assaults. Support for so-called campus-carry laws had been hard to muster despite efforts by proponents to argue that armed students and faculty members could prevent mass shootings like the one at Virginia Tech in 2007. The carrying of concealed firearms on college campuses is banned in 41 states by law or by university policy. Carrying guns openly is generally not permitted. But this year, lawmakers in 10 states who are pushing bills that would permit the carrying of firearms on campus are hoping that the national spotlight on sexual assault will help them win passage of their measures. ‘‘If you’ve got a person that’s raped because you wouldn’t let them carry a firearm to defend themselves, I think you’re responsible,’’ State Representative Dennis K. Baxley of Florida said during debate in a House subcommittee last month. The bill passed. The sponsor of a bill in Nevada, Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, said in a telephone interview: ‘‘If these young, hot little girls on campus have a firearm, I wonder how many men will want to assault them. The sexual assaults that are occurring would go down once these sexual predators get a bullet in their head.’’ In addition to those in Florida and Nevada, bills that would allow guns on campus have been introduced in Indiana, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas and Wyoming. Opponents say that university campuses should remain havens from the gun-related risks that exist elsewhere, and that college students, with high rates of binge drinking and other recklessness, would be particularly prone to gun accidents. And some experts in sexual assault said that college women were typically assaulted by someone they knew, sometimes a friend, so even if they had access to their gun, they would rarely be tempted to use it. ‘‘It reflects a misunderstanding of sexual assaults in general,’’ said John D. Foubert, an Oklahoma State University professor and national president of One in Four, which provides educational programs on sexual assault to college campuses. ‘‘If you have a rape situation, usually it starts with some sort of consensual behavior, and by the time it switches to nonconsensual, it would be nearly impossible to run for a gun. Maybe if it’s someone who raped you before and is coming back, it theoretically could help them feel more secure.’’ Other objectors to the bills say that advocates of the campus-carry laws, predominantly Republicans with well-established pro-gun stances, are merely exploiting a hot-button issue. ‘‘The gun lobby has seized on this tactic, this subject of sexual assault,’’ said Andy Pelosi, the executive director of the Campaign to Keep Guns Off Campus. ‘‘It resonates with lawmakers.’’ Colorado, Wisconsin and seven other states allow people with legal carry permits to take concealed firearms to campus, some with restrictions. Many of those states once had bans but lifted them in recently, suggesting some momentum for efforts in 2015. more