Gilchrist basks in the sound of one hand clapping

Does anyone know the whereabouts of Jim Gilchrist's marbles? The venerated co-founder of the Neo-Minutemen wore Pampers over his clothes at a planned immigration debate today at California State University, Long Beach. Wait, we're getting word that Gilchrist had just been pulled away from Red Lobster's endless shrimp buffet before taking the stage.

Seriously, not completely sure whether this prop – apparently a flak jacket obviously meant to be worn underneath the clothes – was supposed to convey his bravery in the face of a potential assassin's bullet or obscure the coal-eyed, screw-toothed demon jutting from his chest and commanding his every action. The only thing missing from his get-up were oversized sleeves that tie around the back.

But aside from Gilchrist's questionable choice of rhetorical costume pieces, there is real news to be extracted from his recent appearance in Long Beach. The OCRegister notes that more than 150 people walked out when they smelled a setup at the scheduled debate between Gilchrist and Enrique Morones, a member of the Border Angels – a group that aids border crossers.

As per the report, about two-thirds of the audience filed out when they found out the moderator was an old drinking buddy of Gilchrist's (The moderator was not named in the article, but I'm guessing it was this lady).

After most of the audience left, Gilchrist stayed valiantly behind, choked back the tears and preached to the choir his views about immigrants (they suck yada yada).

Meanwhile those who left, and apparently about 50 additional people who must have smelled the pot, had a “Kum Ba Yah” fest outside. The Register reported that about 200 liberal hippies “took part in a rally organized by the Campus Coalition Against Hate. The crowd sang songs, faculty members gave speeches and students and teachers wore signs that said “my grandparents came here from (country).”

Alas, as fate would have it, nobody learned anything from the experience. Sigh.

Top photo by Leonard Ortiz of the OC Register

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