I need to preface this post by acknowledging the value I see in democratic government, but… WHAT IS GOING ON IN ARIZONA?!
I think that there is definitely something to be said about enforcing border laws, following immigration legislation and procedures that are in place, etc., etc., but giving police the discretion to ASK people who “look illegal” to show papers is completely out of line.
Let’s take a moment and ask ourselves… what does “illegal” look like? America is a diverse country full of people from many different nations, ethnicities, origins, etc. No one looks the same, and I would argue that many people find beauty in that diversity. However… it seems that our good American countrymen and women down in Arizona feel like the borders are not being protected well enough and they should stop people who are questionably here without permission. Not that I necessarily want to draw comparisons to the way that Native American tribes were cheated out of their land… but the American history of “illegal” occupation doesn’t look to great.
Many people in Arizona, as well as around the country, are already fighting AZ Senate Bill 1070, including President Obama, who stated that the federal government needed to reform national immigration law, or else others will do so irresponsibly:
“That includes, for example, the recent efforts in Arizona, which threaten to undermine basic notions of fairness that we cherish as Americans, as well as the trust between police and their communities that is so crucial to keeping us safe,” Obama said.
At least our current President is seeing things rationally. The law has already affected a signifiant number of students at the University of Arizona (all of which are honors students), who are switching schools because of Bill 1070. Good one Arizona.
Another wonderful thing the state is doing (which I found thanks to my friend Jon Gates), is removing teachers from classrooms who can’t speak unaccented American English. … WHAT?! Granted it is important for people who are learning a new language to learn from someone with fluency (I am very thankful for my Spanish instructor, Mrs. Robertson, who was born and raised in Lima, Peru), but to remove all teachers who have accents is ludicrous. I’m sure Arizona is simply calling this “educational reform,” but I think many of us who are more open-minded are looking at this more like “racism,” “oppression,” “injustice,” “bigotry,” and “white supremacy” among other things.