Posts Tagged ‘ Arizona ’

Much Ado About Nothing

Arizona lawmakers modify immigration law:

Arizona lawmakers late Thursday narrowed a controversial immigration law signed last week by the governor in hopes of quelling a national firestorm over suggestions it will force police to racially profile Latinos while looking for illegal immigrants…

The initial law forbade race from being used “solely” to form the suspicion but not from being a factor. Civil rights lawyers contended that it essentially legalized racial profiling.

In the final hours of their legislative session, after three federal lawsuits were filed contending the law is unconstitutional, lawmakers removed the word “solely,” explicitly banning race from being used at all by police.

This change means nothing; police use racial profiling as their sole basis for making contact all the time, but they know how to manufacture other reasons to obscure that fact. Further, the change doesn’t lessen the tremendous pressure on Arizona’s police to arrest illegal immigrants; while the legislature also lowered the fines police departments would pay if sued for not rounding up “enough” illegals, the profit motive remains for right-wing groups like the Immigration Reform Law Institute and it’s parent group, FAIR to launch suits statewide.

“Fast Facts on Arizona’s Immigration Crack Down”

Via AZSpot comes this piece from the Center for American Progress:

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed today what is now the most punitive and sweeping anti-immigrant state law in the nation. This law’s full effects will not be measurable for months to come, but it is already clear that it will be challenged in court because it denies rights guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution. And until the legal issues are settled, the new law will have a detrimental effect on Arizona’s economy, as well as city and state budgets.

“Grijalva Closing Two Offices After Death Threats On Immigration”

Things have gotten nastier in the hellhole known as Arizona:

Dem Rep Raul Grijalva is closing two district offices in Arizona after a man threatened to kill his staff over immigration, Grijalva spokesman Adam Sarvana confirms.

“Tuscon staff answered two calls,” Sarvana says. “It was the same guy. He threatened to blow everyone’s brains out in the Tuscon office.”

That wasn’t all. “He then said he was going to the border to shoot any Mexicans he was going to come across,” Sarvana says. “So there are police at the Tuscon office right now.” Sarvana adds that Grijalva is closing another office in Yuma as a precaution.

Sarvana adds that there have been no shortage of racist calls, too. “They’ve openly been pretty ugly,” he says. “One said, `Send that tortilla-eating wetback back to Mexico.’”

Arizona’s SB 1070 is Going to Become a Law. A Bad One.

Governor Jan Brewer is getting emails and phone calls ten to one against signing the racial profiling bill SB 1070, but a Rasmussen poll conducted last week showed that 70% of likely voters favored the legislation.

Brewer is already on thin ice with the GOP base for supporting Proposition 100, a one-cent sales tax aimed at eliminating the state’s gargantuan budget deficit, and she has three primary challengers (businessman Owen “Buz” Mills, State Treasurer Dean Martin, and former Board of Regents President John Munger). Sheriff Joe (“Persecuting brown people is my signature issue”) Arpaio is also itching to jump into the race against her, and he’ll do it in a heartbeat if she vetoes the bill.

In short: For Brewer to veto SB 1070 would be political suicide. I expect she’ll sign it on Saturday, just before the 5:00 PM deadline. After that, lawsuits will fly and conventions will be canceled in protest… And Arizona will officially be more disgusting than any of the Bible Belt states.

A Rogue State

Will Bunch is right: How long until Arizona tries to secede?

If Republican Gov. Jan Brewer signs into law the harsh anti-immigration measure recently passed by state lawmakers — making racial profiling the law of the law in a manner in which the term “police state” is not hyperbole — then the desert paradise will all but have seceded from the Union. Not legally — not yet, anyway, although in a few years who knows? — but morally…

Americans, and Arizonans in this present crisis, have two choices. We can turn an entire state of more than 6 million people into a non-stop cauldron of paranoia and suspicion, separate children from their parents, destroy what’s left of Arizona’s economy out of little more than spite and — let’s be honest here, OK? — racism, and treat our fellow humans like common criminals. Of we can provide a real path to U.S. citizenship for people who are already here and who agree to continue to pay taxes and obey our laws, and get more realistic in the future about who enters the United States and who doesn’t — and work to make Arizona a beacon of economic growth.

It doesn’t seem like a hard choice — and yet here is Arizona on the brink of becoming a rogue state, right here within our borders.