Ding-Dong! Barbara Coe is Dead! Godmother of Anti-Immigrant Movement/Evilest Woman in OC History Passes Away

Thumbnail image for arpaio-coe-hunt.jpg
Beth Stirnaman/OC Weekly
From left: Joe Arpayaso, Barbara Coe, and Bill Hunt
About the nicest thing that can be said about Barbara Coe, who passed away this weekend at age 79 from lung cancer undoubtedly caused by her chain-smoking, is that she she wore big glasses before it was cool to do so. Other than that, she was pure, unrepentant evil, the godmother of the anti-immigrant, Minuteman Project AND Birther movement via her California Coalition for Immigration Reform; spreader of noxious, racist lies; fellow traveler with white supremacists; the definition of a crone; an exploiter of tragic deaths to further her vile cause; a pendeja, a racist, a homophobe, a bigot--and one of the most influential women in OC history, on top of our long Rolodex of Racism. God, we won't miss her.

The world is a far-better place with Babs in Hell. And, yes: Coe is in hell because there's no way she would ever want to be in heaven, the domain of that swarthy illegal alien savage named Jesús.

We have covered Coe for so long in these pages that to properly cover all the insanity she spoke over the years--from claiming that Muslims train Mexican drug cartels to calling a federal judge a "homo" to claiming an asparagus diet can cure cancer--is simply impossible. We would like to point out that her creation myth, the story she'd always give reporters as to why she went from an Anaheim police department clerk to creating the group that would go on to sponsor 1994's Proposition 187--that she tried to take her World War II vet friend to a health clinic filled with people who didn't speak English--was a flat-out LIE, which makes us think that her claims that she was part-Sioux and grew up on the Pine Ridge Reservation was as likely a story as someone claiming their great-grandmother was a Cherokee princess.

Okay, enough bile. Many local liberals would frequently criticize me for writing about Coe's every foible, claiming that she was irrelevant--which shows how dumb local liberals are. Fact is, Coe was a titan of OC politics, Alien queen to some of the largest American conservative grassroots movements over the past quarter-century. Through her group, 1994's anti-immigrant Proposition 187 was not only created and passed, but has been copied ad nauseum ever since across the country. From the monthly CCIR meetings she held at the Garden Grove Women's Club, Jim Gilchrist got his inspiration for the Minuteman Project (later on, Gilchrist would smartly repent of his dalliance with Coe) and Orly Taitz figured it was time to create the Birther movement. From her cesspool of ideas, local politicians figured it was smart to put migra agents in Orange County jails, try to sue Mexico for educating the children of illegal immigrants, and give police officers the power to check on someone's immigration--ideas that seemed ludicrous when first introduced but are now virtually standard nationwide. Politicians would frequent Coe's meetings, seeking the approval of her minions.

Actually, the nicest thing that can be said about Coe is that her activism caused the best possible backlash imaginable: the radicalization of Mexican-Americans in California, who were walking down the path toward Hispanicizing themselves until being jolted awake by Proposition 187. And her repeated local efforts only galvanized more and more OC Mexis, leaving a county full of 'em happy to get into activism, happy to not only dominate this county demographically, but also happy to get on the road to political office to ensure Coe's ilk never have power again. It's particularly pleasing to know that in her last gasps, Coe left a county that was majority-minority and lay dying probably in a medical facility swarming with Filipino and Mexican immigrants attending to her final needs.

Email: garellano@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @gustavoarellano.

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117 comments
thebeatles196462
thebeatles196462

Seriously, I stopped giving a shit about these retards, the whole country itself is loathing with retardation. Even I as someone who is probably more Mexican than whoever wrote this piece, think America is completely overrated! The country is full of retards, I'd rather move to Germany, at least they are not that retarded there.

Shoogi
Shoogi

Nice to see that you Mexicans could take some time off from molesting your neices or stabbing your nephew in a drunken rage in your driveway at 3am, to voice your opinions! God bless America!

Alejandro Javier
Alejandro Javier

Question 1# what would happen if the United states took Mexico's imigrations policy word for word and applied as their own? Entonces ya valdria madre! Question #2 what would happen if USA was really Mexico and Mexico was El.Salvador? Exactly... I know hundreds of Mexicans, including my own relatives (in mexico) who would be pissed off for diminishing the sovereignty of their country by just giving full rights to anyone other then their citizens. The only reason why it's such an issue is because USA is such a great country! Otherwise, we wouldn't be having such a debate or an issue for reform. Ahi que ser realistas y un poco menos de hipócritas! There are laws and rules to follow... I doubt anyone would march into a well established company demanding an executive position immediately. No one is entitled to anything...IT MUST BE EARNED!

walshferdinand
walshferdinand

Piche pendeja.
I hope she becomes reincarnated as a Salvadorian undocumented immigrant in Mexico!

18usc241
18usc241 topcommenter

The only problem I've ever had with evolution is that it's so damn slow.

vegandawg23
vegandawg23 topcommenter

RIP. Too many damn people here anyways. We don't need anymore illegal mexicans (or polacks, chinese or indians). Seems like a good progressive lady. Progressive in the dictionary meaning of the word not the coopted by loonies meaning.

AmeriKKKanNightmare
AmeriKKKanNightmare

One racist Xenophobe cracKKKah down! ...Is Joe "Bull Connor" Arpaio next? ...Lets all pray to be so..., y pronto!

Andy Potter
Andy Potter

I don't know. I wholeheartedly disagree with what she stood for but I'm not at all happy that she's dead. RIP.

Joe Gomez
Joe Gomez

I think he meant Old Ideas and those that hold on to them will one Day be just a Memory

saenzpop
saenzpop

lol. i love this article.

José-Ariel Cuevas
José-Ariel Cuevas

She is now playing tonsil-hockey with Wally George somewhere in the third realm of hell.

Richard Jacquez
Richard Jacquez

If they are Christians, their fruit will be evident.

Graciela Mireles
Graciela Mireles

When you're a pendeja hater like the person we are speaking of, what do you expect in return.

Charlie Wilson
Charlie Wilson

I hope La Recoquista is living on -- the bigger problem at hand here is too many of us are refusing to look at the big picture. Many of you are wondering what I'm talking about when I say the bigger picture, well... the bigger picture is... economically and in terms of everything else, the country is in decline, and the bill of rights have been shredded , all of them, except 2, the Second, and the Third, of course when Jeb Bush wins the elections on a Pro-immigration platform come, the Second Amendment will completely be shredded, and all we will have left is the third. I'll let you figure that one out, and wonder if that 3rd amendment will get shredded -- especially now that this man hating Janet Napolitano has admitted that 1.6 Billion rounds of ammunition have been purchased by Home Land Security, as well as Buffallo M-RAPS for urban warfare to be partrolled domestically. The US Army is up in arms about why is it that HLS now has a bigger fire power than they do. And which people and which groups do you thing are gonna see those MRAPS stream-rolling and blazing everywhere in their neighborhood?

edblncrt
edblncrt

IBMMuseum: I verified as much, too, about her "Sioux" past. Her father, Walter, was a WWI vet from Iowa; his father Clinton was from Iowa; and his father Charles from Illinois. I can't find any direct evidence of association with tribes, much less with the Sioux at Pine Ridge.

Also, she was divorced in 1968. Jack got out of that one! though I can't figure out when she was married. Her son David was born in Riverside in November 1953.  What, Barbara, were you doing in Riverside at 18 or 19 having kids? And who's Jack?


FFO1939
FFO1939

Vaya con la Santa Muerte!! Tu tambien Gustavo y Matt!!

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

Her claim of partial Sioux ancestry (from her mother's side) is false. She (Barbara Anne Coe, nee Bennett) was born in the "Badlands" area of South Dakota, where her family was present in the years before her birth, but before age 7 was being raised in Virginia (where her mother's line, at least out to Barbara's Great Grandparents, were born). Apparently even with her mother living in California until age 70, Barbara never got the story correct.

R Keith Beal
R Keith Beal

A sovereign nation has the right to decide who can immigrate. This is not about racism, it is about society and law. And you call anyone who doesn't support an unlimited flow of criminals and economic refugees a racist!

peterhong30
peterhong30

She wrote me a letter that concluded with "Go Home, Chink !" then wouldn't apologize or back down when I called her on it. She told me she had many Asian friends in Gardena. 

--Peter Hong



Hugh Jasol
Hugh Jasol

She was just trying to save this poor country from being over run by ILLEGALS! RIP Barbara Coe.

Luiza Padilla- Mavropoulos
Luiza Padilla- Mavropoulos

Rich Grant i unferstand your fesr id HIS PANICS THEY ARE your panic msybe one took your job your woman your lolipop WHATEVER..until you hsve felt the sting and burn of discrimmination your just another white man with a stick up his ass regarding minorities.. You should start feeling the shift as frm.what I read. You white man are now the minority..pray people of color treat you better than you have treated them.

Anthony Gonzalez
Anthony Gonzalez

I haven't read this piece and i already hate her....Just another Hypocritical Racist Gringo in the OC... I shouldn't say that, We don't want to get the Gringo's up in arms...We wouldn't want them to spill their glass of cheap merlot or choke on their xanax pills....Gringo's and their false sense of entitlement, please do us all a favor stay down in south county, in your little enclaves, keep drinking your boxes chardy from Trader joes and chewing on those wellbutrn tabs, as you live out your delusions of living in the 1950's..Years from now as you live out your final days in a convalescent home, abandoned from your family, guess who are going to be around to take care of you....I'd say the future is looking pretty bright...Sigue la lucha!!!! (y)

EA Prieto
EA Prieto

"O-bum-a" has already deported more raza than George W did in both terms. So I say fuck all politicians, holmes!

Nick Riviera
Nick Riviera

I've never seen the democrats on the forefront of any anti-immigrant legislation, so ya, FK the GOP!

Ryan J Nolan
Ryan J Nolan

Nick are you saying that everyone that is part of the GOP and is not a dem is racist?

Ray Valdez
Ray Valdez

Ayi esta esperando el diablo, vieja!!!

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

@edblncrt Interesting, her daughter (Suzan, now deceased)) was born in South Dakota two years after her son David (1955). Barbara returns to South Dakota a few times, her father-in-law, Jack Sr., dies in her birth town a year before her divorce from Jack Jr. (she isn't mentioned in the obit). I think she would have known enough of her heritage to not place herself as true Sioux.

edblncrt
edblncrt

@IBMMuseum

Beyond great-grandparents even. She once claimed in one of her crazy letters, along with referring to her father as an "Injun" (not true), that her maternal grandparents *came here legally from Ireland* (Murfee). Which she fabricated: her Four-Greats Grandfather Richard Murfee Sr. came from Scotland and settled in Virginia, where he died in 1789, and where the Murfees continue to this day. Surely she would have known that Grandma and Grampa Murfee weren't immigrants

I've noticed that this "my people came here legally" line is a common trope of anti-immigration types. this notwithstanding that until the 20th century, excepting the Chinese, anybody who just showed up here could stay, so long as they swore they weren't anarchists or polygamists, and didn't have tuberculosis. "Came here legally"? more like "got here at the right time and got lucky".

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@IBMMuseum @edblncrt I LOVE how you random people are filling in details of this crone's life! Well-played, good sirs!

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

@edblncrt I heard of her claim to Sioux ancestry expressed to be from her mother's line, so she wasn't even consistent (not that I would have expected that from a long-term smoker, whom thought that eating asparagus was better than quitting cigarettes). The "Indian" and "legally immigrated" (even coming through Ellis Island when it wasn't in service) stories are pretty common in white-bread families, when they just pass the story along without any research. They even confuse the trip with becoming a citizen, and often the ancestors "illegally" left their homelands (without the permission of the government for where they lived before).

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

Also, Indian censuses, especially for the tribes around South Dakota, were very detailed and usually done annually in that time frame...

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

@edblncrt I'll need to look more, but South Dakota had a 1945 state census (I've found Mom, my older Uncle, and my Grandmother, Grandpa was off fighting the war), and I didn't get any hits for Bab's family (that were still among the living)...

edblncrt
edblncrt

Jack Jr. passed in early '92, here in LA. Born in Wyoming in 1930, the family bumped around a lot, ending up in South Dakota in '48, where Jack Sr. was a ranch hand and hospital janitor.

Maybe Barb's issue with Mexicans is that all those ranch hands and janitors remind her of her pappy-in-law.

IBMMuseum
IBMMuseum

Correction against my statement, here is a quote from her: 'As part "native American Indian" (Sioux - born and raised on the S.D. Pine Ridge reservation), I have no intention of "scrutinizing" your heritage. My mom's parents came legally from Ireland (Murfee) and my dad was an "Injun".'

As "edblncrt" has identified, all false...

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