Without justifying Pancho Villa's behavior, you must know that terrible, awful, even heinous things often occur under the shroud of war. Ask anyone who has been in one. Talking about his activity in the Korean War, Clint Eastwood's character says in Gran Torino, "The thing that haunts a man the most is what he isn't ordered to do."
The times that Pancho Villa lived in were violent, to be sure, and to say he was a host of contradictions is putting it lightly. But what is even more evident close to 100 years later is that Tom Danehy might need some anger management to assist him in dealing with his heartfelt pain and anguish.
B. Eliot Minor
The commander of the U.S Army garrison at Camp Furlong had been warned that Villa was likely to attack. Had he taken the warning seriously, it's almost certain that American lives could have been saved. Instead, he and other senior officers spent the fateful night of March 9, 1916, playing cards in a Deming saloon. While Villa's men fired the first shots, precious time was lost breaking down a locked armory door to obtain the weapons to fight back. By the time the young lieutenant in charge could mount a counterattack, much of Columbus lay in ruin.
There's reason to believe the attack was more than a whim on Villa's part. He may have been seeking revenge on a Columbus merchant who was said to have cheated him on a weapons deal. It was even rumored that Villa was paid to stage the raid. American business interests lusted after the rich mines and grazing lands of Sonora and Chihuahua. An unprovoked attack from Mexico would sway public opinion for war to realize their objectives. The fact that U.S. troops were not put on alert lends some credibility to the rumor. Only Villa knew for sure, and he never told.
William C. Thornton
Daniel E. Reyes III
Imagine displaying it where it would be highly visible to traffic and where you could actually walk up to it and get a feel for Father Kino, as represented by this imposing, large statue. The whole thing could be made into an inviting experience for visitors and residents alike, with benches and grass surrounding it.
Keep in mind that just because Mexico gave the Pancho Villa statue as a "gift" to Arizona doesn't justify it being prominently displayed in Tucson. After all, other than the 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers at Fort Huachuca pursuing him into Mexico, and a couple of battles across the border at Naco and Agua Prieta, Pancho Villa had little to do with Arizona's history, much less Tucson's.
As far as what to do with Pancho Villa's statue, maybe we could melt it down and recast it as Gen. John J. Pershing, and send it to Chihuahua as a "gift."
What to do? Raising tax rates and all other sources of governmental revenue will worsen the already critical economic and personal financial situation now facing all of the private sectors. Slashing governmental budgets will worsen the economic meltdown. After all, governments are the leading employers and the "biggest spenders" except for other consumers in our economy.
Meeting the budget shortfalls through ever-greater governmental debt will erode the confidence of those who buy the debt instruments and, eventually, leave those governmental entities with unmanageable debt, or lead to massive stagflation (a rise in inflation when the economy is shrinking).
Personal debt of all kinds is also at record or near-record levels at a time when personal wealth in most cases is, or soon will be, shrinking. Consumer spending has already dropped dramatically.
There are no easy solutions. Prepare for some tumultuous times, economic and political. A "Happy New Year" is not likely.