Friday, April 30, 2010

SB 1070 - anti-illegal immigration law

People are talking about this all over the place. Most have shown a remarkable lack of understanding of the law and its implications. I'm not interested in getting in flame wars in those places, so I'm just going to outline a few points here that you may not have thought about and then I'm not interested in talking about it any more:

- Police officers already have the power to arrest illegal immigrants and turn them over to the Border Patrol. This law will allow people to sue the police for both NOT enforcing the law and for racial profiling. It's an untenable law that even police think is BS. They will be damned if they do and damned if they don't.

- It requires police to make an effort to determine immigration status if there is "reasonable suspicion". That is left within the police's discretion. How does an illegal look? I'll tell you, in the eyes of the police, he looks brown. That gives the them the right of asking legal American citizens for their proof of citizenship. If someone was in the country illegally from say, Canada or Ireland, what would make them identifiable by the police? Absolutely nothing! So, what makes our police so special that they can see something we cannot? They can't. That's the point. If you are brown, you are going down.

- If you are for this law, then you must be for all citizens carrying proof of their citizenship at all times and being required to provide it at the police's discretion. Sound familiar?

- In a already down economy, Arizona is doing something that is going to isolate them from the country in the world in a manner similar to what it did during the MLK day fiasco. I have personally spoken with business owners here who are getting cancellations by the truckload for resorts, hotels and conventions. There is a very real chance that Major League Baseball will relocate next year's All-Star game from Arizona. If our leaders want to be backwoods, ignorant xenophobes, do it somewhere else, because it is affecting the ability of non-racist people to make a living. This law, though signed, will not go into effect for at least 90 days. With all of the costly court challenges sure to come, I would suspect it may never go into effect. So, what has been accomplished? Nothing is done to help illegal immigration. The state will lose hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue. The world will laugh at Arizona. Congratulations, Russell Pearce, Joe Arpaio, and Jan Brewer ... you are sure to go down unfavorably in the long list of Arizona political fuck-ups (Evan Mecham, Fife Symington).

2 comments:

wunelle said...

Yeah, I just don't get this whole I-Hate-Others thing. If they're taking the lawn care job you wanted, then fine, protest; otherwise, why do we care (except in the few towns where social services are strained)?

Likewise the insistence on speaking English; why muster the energy to care one way or the other? I love all the Hispanic culture around LA, for example. Gang and drug violence are other matters, much more related to poverty and alienation, I'd say, than immigration per se (and before Latin gangs there were black gangs and then Irish gangs and then Italian gangs. This is the world).

dbackdad said...

If people want to talk meaningful immigration reform, that is fine. This law just has nothing to do with that. This is Jim Crow for the new century.

Joe Arpaio and his merry band of Nazis were doing immigration sweeps on our side of town last night (within a mile or two of us). The place was like a ghost town. Cops are worried this new law will dissuade Latinos from actually reporting crimes because they don't want to be shaken down. Scary stuff.