The unsolved murder Saturday of a soft-spoken rancher in southern Arizona has become a new flashpoint in the debate over illegal immigration, with conservative media and politicians demanding increased border security.
Less than two days after authorities found the body of 58-year-old Robert Krentz, political bloggers and talk-show hosts began denouncing the federal government for a perceived failure to protect U.S. civilians from violent smugglers and other illegal border crossers.
The body was discovered in an all-terrain vehicle shortly before midnight by an Arizona Department of Public Safety search helicopter. Capas said Krentz, who was married with three children, apparently managed to drive a short distance from the shooting scene before he became unconscious. His dog also had been critically wounded.
Capas said Phil Krentz had called Border Patrol agents to the Krentz Ranch one day before the homicide after witnessing illegal immigrant activity. She said the agents found more than 200 pounds of discarded marijuana and arrested eight undocumented immigrants in the area.
...However, Aja and others said Krentz was always soft-spoken and thoughtful, willing to help immigrants who became lost or desperate after entering the country unlawfully. "Rob Krentz, first of all, was a very gentle soul," Aja said. "He was a caretaker for his family, for the land and for the animals he raised."
Pity and Mercy are generally thought to be ideological virtues. In practice, however, they are generally a deadly vice that has caused more pain and suffering than smallpox.