Over time, I’ve become calloused enough to slough off many news reports as symptoms of the times. Because of that buffer, I seldom get angry about things going on in the world — emphasis on “seldom.”
To wit, more than a month ago a blurb hit the airways that one of our Marines drove across the southern border and was being held by Mexican authorities. I put the event in my “stuff happens” pile, assuming it’d be quickly cleared up and Sgt. Tahmooressi would return to American soil.
Well, here we are almost two months later and our Marine is still being held. It boggles my mind, not that Mexico is detaining him but that we’ve put up with it for this long without stronger reaction.
The charges against him focus on that he crossed the border with a few personal firearms in his car. I believe he had PCS orders and was moving belongings to his new duty station.
I have great faith in and admiration for our military, especially the Marine Corps into which I was born. But notwithstanding their deserved reputation as a fighting force, I hardly think one individual Marine constitutes an invasion. Of course, I have no clue as to the overall capabilities of the Mexican armed services. Perhaps one Marine poses a credible threat to them, but I somehow doubt it.
Recordings of his 911 call and one to his mother pretty much dispel any notion that his crossing of the border was anything but accidental. However, I understand Mexico is a sovereign nation and must protect the integrity of its borders so it’s entirely understandable processes exist through which the sergeant’s case must travel.
I respect this concept and wish we strongly defended our borders so can’t fault Mexico for defending theirs. However, any legitimacy for his detention disappeared when Tahmooressi was callously chained hand and foot for days on end.
So as far as I’m concerned, from that point on Mexican “due process” became a joke. I’ve seen television interviews with his lawyer who seems cut from a standard lawyer template. He spoke gobbledygook, popular international legalese.
I’m pretty sure now it’s mostly about our dead presidents. We’ll end up sending them a bale of money to cover their “costs.” It’s common knowledge that the price of gruel has skyrocketed.
Obviously it’s a very good thing I’m not in charge, but I do wish somebody was. We tolerate junk like this from dysfunctional governments because we’re fast becoming one of them. No surprise there, if you elect nothing you get nothing.
Let me get this straight: Mexico gets giggly because one guy illegally enters their country. Holy Pancho Villa, 10 million have entered ours!
I’m not waving aside the firearm issue, but I don’t recall hoopla from Mexico when Eric Holder’s “Fast and Furious” weapons flowed south. But to be fair, some of those were eventually returned to the U.S. — in excellent working order.
Given the reactive imbalance, I guess those in Sgt. Tahmooressi’s trunk are a bigger deal. Go figure.
Otis Gardner’s column appears here weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.