The recent burning of a Mexican flag by American extremists raised a number of questions. Luckily, they aren’t hard to answer
PHOENIX, Ariz. — Last Dec. 16, two hate group leaders burned a Mexican flag in front of the Mexican consulate here. Laine Lawless, the head of Border Guardians, and Donald Pauly, the founder of the Emigration Party of Nevada, had boastfully predicted that 500 supporters would show up.
But as it turned out, counter-demonstrators, members of the media, and a Phoenix Police Department tactical unit vastly outnumbered the handful of extremists Lawless and Pauly managed to muster.
Lawless seemed particularly mystified and furious. "This is an outrage!" she bellowed into her bullhorn. "I want to know what's the matter with the men of Phoenix. Aren't your balls big enough to stand here with me and burn the Mexican flag?"
Dozens of hand-lettered "Go Back to Mexico" signs Lawless brought went unused, stacked forlornly on the grass behind her.
The event was heavily covered in the Phoenix media, and provided the opening scene for a national wire service story on the rise of anti-immigration extremism.
With an eye to offering readers a test of their knowledge of nativist extremism, here is a simple, seven-question quiz:
1) During her megaphone-amplified rant, what phrase did Lawless repeatedly use to describe immigration from Mexico and Central America?
A. "Foreign invasion."
B. "Foreign infection."
C. "Foreign infestation."
D. All of the above.
2) When Lawless asked, "Why are more American citizens not joining me here today to protect American sovereignty?" what did a protester immediately call out in response?
A. "Because you're a racist nut!"
B. "Because you're scary! Very, very scary!"
C. "Because they're intimidated by your brilliance!"
D. "Because they're busy learning Spanish!"
3) On the topic of violent crime, Lawless claimed that "illegals among us victimize an American citizen…"
A. "…every 17 seconds."
B. "…every 17 minutes."
C. "…every 17 hours."
D. "…every 17 days."
4) When pressed by a journalist to identify the source or sources for her statistics, Lawless said:
A. "I heard them on 'Lou Dobbs Tonight'."
B. "I divined them by casting bones."
C. "They're a distillation of different sources a confederate came up with."
D. "I downloaded them from www-dot-racistnutpropaganda-dot-com."
5) When a protester interrupted Lawless' speech by shouting, "You're a fucking Nazi!" what did Lawless yell back?
A. "I know you are, but what am I?"
B. "Thank you for the compliment, young man!"
C. "No, I'm a high priestess of Wicca who writes erotic fan fiction about Xena, the warrior princess!"
D."No soy fascista. Soy cazamigrante y bruja pendejo!"
6) What festive nighttime event did Lawless attend after the flag burning, and what did she do there?
A. The Arizona Renaissance Festival, where she defeated all challengers in the Broadsword and Buckler tournament.
B. A karaoke contest at a Macayo's Mexican Kitchen franchise, where she pounded strawberry margaritas and placed second with her rendition of "Livin' La Vida Loca."
C. A high-stakes poker game fundraiser for the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, where she called MCDC founder Chris Simcox "the little twerp" every time he folded.
D. "Winterfest," a "Yuletime" turkey dinner hosted by the neo-Nazi group National Vanguard, where she listened to white-power folk music and speeches by Holocaust deniers Paul Fromm and Fritz Berg.
7) When asked by the Intelligence Report about her attending the post-flag burning event, what did Lawless write in reply?
A. "I am interested in history, and the speakers provided an unusual point of view, if an unconventional one."
B. "I found no hate there, but nice friendly folks."
C. "I had a good time."
D. All of the above.
Answers 1) D; 2) A; 3) A; 4) C; 5) B; 6) D; 7) D