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Stay Away From Arizona

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Posted on Apr 28, 2010
AP / Guillermo Arias

By Bill Boyarsky

Arizona and its new immigration law offer a frightening preview of the police-state mentality that could envelop other parts of the nation if anti-immigrant hysteria spreads to other states with weak-kneed legislatures and city councils.

Under the law signed last week, cops can stop anyone if officers think there is “a reasonable suspicion” the person is in the country illegally. People can be jailed for the vague offense of trespassing if they are stopped on public or private land. The law requires some form of government identification to prove legal status. Arizona, as Linda Greenhouse wrote in The New York Times, would, in effect, require “internal passports, one of the most distasteful features of life in the Soviet Union and apartheid-era South Africa.”

I’ve vacationed in the Phoenix area of Arizona during baseball spring training for many years, the domain of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He’s infamous for his department’s sweeps through Latino neighborhoods, arresting dark-skinned people on suspicion of being illegal immigrants. The U.S. Justice Department is investigating the practice. He’s more infamous for his male, female and juvenile chain gangs wearing black-and-white striped uniforms. He also forces male prisoners to wear pink underwear.

My brother Jeff and I take a cab when we go out to dinner at night, fearing that a cocktail or a glass of wine might land us on the chain gang or in pink shorts. In a way this is good. Drinking and driving is bad.

However, we also are constantly aware that we could be stopped for no apparent reason at all. That’s what can happen in Maricopa County now, even before the new law takes effect.

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Take the case of a Latino truck driver, born in Fresno, Calif., who was stopped in the Phoenix area shortly after the immigration law was signed. When he arrived at a weighing station, he was asked for identification. He gave an officer his commercial driver’s license and his Social Security number. “He [the officer] came back and said ‘I need your birth certificate,’ ” the driver told Channel 3TV in Phoenix. “I said it’s in my house.”

The driver was handcuffed, put in a van and taken to the immigration and customs law enforcement building in Phoenix. An agent called his wife and told her to bring over his birth certificate. She drove home from work, retrieved the birth certificate and took it to the immigration building.

Her husband was released 90 minutes later.

She asked the agent why her husband had been jailed. The agent replied that he hadn’t answered the questions correctly. “We can be stopped any time,” the wife said. [We] have to bring the certificates with us. ... It just doesn’t feel like a good way of life, to live with fear, to be stopped.”

News coverage has centered on its impact on Latinos, 30 percent of the state’s population. This ignores the impact the law will have on others with immigrant roots, particularly those from Middle Eastern countries and South Asian nations such as India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

“This is not just something that will affect the Latino community,” Affad Shaikh, civil rights manager of the Council on American-Islamic Relations of Greater Los Angeles, told me. “This will affect minorities across the board. ... This law legitimizes racial profiling. How will they be able to tell if you are documented or undocumented?”

Anas Hlayhel, chairman of the Arizona branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said, “American Muslims have faced the detrimental effects of racial profiling, and we stand against the broad and generalized application of this practice.”

Sheriff Arpaio’s Maricopa County is an extreme example of what can happen when police are given such wide authority to make arrests. Influenced by anti-immigrant activists, other state legislatures may pass the same kind of law. The Associated Press reported that a Texas legislator said she will introduce a measure similar to the Arizona statute. Cities and towns around the country have enacted or proposed harsh immigrant statutes.

I talked about this possibility with Ahilan Arulanantham, director of immigrants’ rights and national security for the ACLU of Southern California. He told me, “I think it does have implications beyond Arizona because the political sentiments that drove this law exist elsewhere, and that is why it is important to establish that this law is unconstitutional. If other legislatures recognize that, it should prevent them from copying it.”

Constitutional experts are divided on whether a court would throw out the law. Professor Hiroshi Motomura of the School of Law at the University of California, Los Angeles, told The New York Times, “My view of the constitutional question is that it is unconstitutional. But it’s a far cry from predicting empirically what a judge who actually gets this case will do.”

That is why it is important for Congress to pass and President Barack Obama to sign a comprehensive immigration bill. It should give illegal immigrants a clear path to citizenship. The measure should also make it clear that enforcement of immigration laws is a federal matter, not something left to the whims and prejudices of local cops like Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

But this is much more than an immigrant issue. Giving police the authority to stop a person on the “reasonable suspicion” he or she is an illegal immigrant clears the way for the arrest of anyone from an American-born Latino doctor to an Indian-American professor to an English immigrant who somehow offended an angry, ignorant or oversensitive police officer.

Such statutes are a step toward a police state, and the president and Congress should get to work on a federal immigration law immediately. In the meantime, stay away from Arizona.


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By dihey, May 3, 2010 at 7:57 pm Link to this comment

P.S. I apologize. I forgot (I am not the only commentator who does so) to include illegal residents who entered the country legally as, say, visitors but stayed past the duration of their visas.
Notice also that I therefore do not use the expression illegal immigrant but illegal resident.

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By dihey, May 3, 2010 at 7:52 pm Link to this comment

The Arizona law has spawned demands that Congress act and “cure” our “broken” immigration laws/system.
There is at least one fundamental problem. It deals with amnesty. No, not the amnesty of allowing illegal residents to become American citizens but the amnesty for committing the felony of illegally entering our country.
It is my view that our constitution does not confer the power of amnesty to Congress. In other words Congress cannot make laws that retroactively give amnesty to a class of lawbreakers which are not individually identified. Only the President has that power.
Ergo, in order to bring about absolution/resolution, a comprehensive immigration law must demand that illegal residents who wish to become legal residents and U.S. citizens must plead guilty in a court of law to having entered the U.S. illegally with the understanding that they will not be arrested and deported but will receive amnesty when the President sign a list on which their names appear.
I suspect that the “Reagan amnesty” was therefore unconstitutional.

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By stcfarms, May 3, 2010 at 6:40 pm Link to this comment

October 11th 1492 would be a good cut off date.

By Linda Lee, April 30 at 5:07 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

Send every single illegal immigrant home IMMEDIATELY and seal the borders.
Period.

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By Droopy, May 3, 2010 at 4:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Earthling, your name calling is screaming reverse raceism. I know what that is, and I know what you’re trying to do by diverting the arguement. FYI, I am not a Mormon and am fully aware of the past racism of that religion. Slavery was condoned by several Southern religions, and Mormonism was no different. I’m not excusing it. Racism only proves the prophets were not inspired by anything except their own greed.

If you can look past my skin color, my ancestors came into the Arizona Territory legally. They followed the laws of Mexico. I am only asking the same from today’s immigrants.

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By Earthling, May 2, 2010 at 9:12 pm Link to this comment

What kind of degenerate filth produces this kind of law?
I am of mixed heritage: Dad’s side goes back to the days of the Revolution, some of my ancestors’ homes and mansions are museums and heritage sites in the US (my sisters could, but never would join the racists DAR, even though my mother is of Japanese background. The family - parents, brothers and sisters, children are all of US nationality). However, because of my skin color, stature - not tall, with that unhealthy pasty pink complexion that typifies the White - in the eyes of your TYPICALLY ethnocentric White American, I am not American. I don’t ‘look the part’.
All of my life, and during the past 2 decades now, while escorting foreign students to towns and universities around the country - from the west coast, through the mid-west, to the south, and on to the east - I am invariably asked about my nationality, my ethnic background, my English ability, my interesting face, my educational background, ...However often I explain to the good “ol’ all ‘Merican Whitey” who is inquiring (I have never been asked such questions from African Americans or those of Hispanic or Mixed Background) that I am American, that my nationality is US, that I am an American by birth and blue blood, the disbelief, the skepticism about my American-hood, about my American-ness persists. The inquisition typically ends with some comment praising my ability to speak English and my knowledge of American history - you know about America better than most Americans).
The questions pivot on a racism that goes so deep that those infected with it are not aware of it themselves, are not aware that they not only perpetrate its injustice, but also preserve it: that ONLY White people can REALLY be American (I was once told this by a young 8-year-old boy who didn’t want to participate in games with the visiting foreign students: because they weren’t American. When I asked the lad how he knew this, he responded that they weren’t “White.” I was horrified!!).
I can’t begin to articulate the incalculable rage that swells up inside me when I imagine that some police officer has the right to question my nationality, to even insinuate that I have no right to be present in the United States because I don’t “look” American.
The typical ‘White’ folk who can’t see themselves embracing racism inveigh against their right to be in the country; these xenophobic ethnic militants haven’t the creed, the blood of the American, but of some tribal-centered separatist. Emerson wrote about us in his diary, the hope that we offered the world: “a new compound more precious than any,” in this “asylum of all nations, the energy of Irish, Germans, Swedes, Poles, & Cossacks, & all European tribes - of the Africans, & the Polynesians, will construct a new race ... as vigorous as the new Europe which came out of the smelting pot of the Dark Ages.” That is what we are, and if you can’t BE that, can’t BE that worldview and its creed of the equality and dignity of all human beings, then you aren’t and can’t be American.
  If the ethnocentric xenophobes don’t like immigrants ‘taking jobs’ - ignore the false belief - then why not demand that fair labor laws for all be unexceptionally enforced (but the xenophobes want their cheap fruits and vegetables and clean hotel rooms and quickly served burgers of cheap slaughtered beef)....
  How can we preclude the Balkanization of the US when its founding creed is buried beneath the slime of racism?

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By Droopy, May 2, 2010 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

My family came to The Arizona Territory as the first white settlers sent by Brigham Young. My g-g-grand parents learned Spanish and bought land from Mexico for farming.

When Arizona became a State there were Mexicans living in Arizona. The public schools taught English only. My father spoke Spanish and English, but I only speak English. My history is Arizona’s history.

I left Arizona when I was 20, but still have family there. I’ve heard stories of Arizona being taken over by crime for many years, but it has gotten worse. One example of crime that other States do not share is Mexicans stealing merchandise until the shops are forced to close.

I support Arizona being able to control its border. I am holding my judgement on this new law.

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By Rush Fay, May 2, 2010 at 10:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The 1952 Immigration and Nationality Act says in part: “Every alien, eighteen
years of age and over, shall at all times carry with him and have in his personal
possession any certificate of alien registration or alien registration receipt card
issued to him.”

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By doob, May 2, 2010 at 10:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Well then we just need to nullify ALL law. Do away with
borders, nationalities, countries and just live in one
big commune! Then we can all hop, skip and jump down
the primrose path to snickers and giggles. It can be
far-out, man. What’s yours is mine and what’s mine is
yours and nobody will own anything! Then maybe all
these ‘Well, I know there is a law on the books, but I
feel so bad about enforcing it!’ type people can
finally get their underwear out of their anus. Heck!
Let’s all get naked!

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By DaveZx3, May 1, 2010 at 10:40 pm Link to this comment

By diamond, May 1 at 6:11 pm #

From your post: “the US cop, one of the most dangerously lawless creatures on this planet”  “Most American cops are racist to the core”

Many communities are victims of lawless and corrupt public servants, including their police forces. 

A majority of communities are able to exercise an adequate level of control in choosing lawful, honorable and effective public servants, which results in very professional, well trained police, who can be trusted to carry out their duties without resorting to illegal behavior.

The victim mentality needs an abusive police force to perpetuate their victimhood.  The same political masters who pose as saviours to the minority populations on the one hand, ensure that the abusive police presence perpetuates that victim status on the other hand. 

Many minority “victims” suck up to the “man” posing as their saviour, not perceiving that the saviour is actually the victimizer.  It is a very strange symbiotic relationship, which seems to be the basis of the progressive, liberal agenda. 

It does not make me feel comfortable that there is a significant political presence in this country which gets its power almost exclusively out of the existence of large numbers of “disadvantaged victims”.

My fears are that, in my understanding of the nature of the powerful, they will seek to perpetuate their power, which means perpetuating the victimized population.

So, in spite of real advances in human relations, (which cannot be denied when we have minorities in such positions as:  US President, best golfer, best tennis players, best in untold other athletic endeavors, Supreme Court justices, highest paid entertainers, all levels of academia and business, virtually everywhere minorities have shown up in the highest, well paid places, establishing their right to occupy these positions over and over and over.) BUT, the masters can still perpetuate the illusion that the minorities are disadvantaged and need a political saviour, separate from “The Saviour”.

I am not saying that prejudice and injustice do not exist.  But I believe that it is less connected to race than it is connected to economic and other elements, and probably just the mean streak which humans seem to possess.

If the young girl who was bullied until she committed suicide had been a non-white, the episode would surely have been logged as racism. 

But the truth is that people are evil and mean and use any differences they can find to express that meanness.  I don’t know what causes this meanness, but I do believe that race is only a convenient tool when nothing else is available.  It could just as easily be young girls ostracizing one of their peers because she has pimples or out of style shoes. 

At any rate, your Constitutional, God-given inalienable right is to be yourself and to make no exuses for it.  You may be physically ugly, fat, short, bald or wear out of style clothes, but the real you is your mind and spirit. 

When you focus on and develop your mind, spirit and character, and quit focusing on your physical looks and presence and your material possesions, then you will acquire the power to shed your victimhood and shed your need to suck up to any humans who would attempt to use you in any way, shape or form.  It is the real nature of freedom.  It is being exactly who you are and not feeling the need to be angry about it when others judge you according to their ignorant ways. 

It is why I love the United States of America in spite of all its “issues”.  Only in this country do you have the power and right (in writing) to be a sovereign individual, accountable to no one but God.  I can be poor if I want, I can be ugly if I want.  You can judge me, at your own peril.  I am not a possession of society, and owe it nothing except my lawful behavior, including the laws that I find completely ignorant, which I follow out of respect for the spirit of the nation

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By diamond, May 1, 2010 at 2:11 pm Link to this comment

Ajplayer, an ‘illegal act’ could mean that you jaywalked and it’s in the hands of the US cop, one of the most dangerously lawless creatures on this planet to decide who to stop and detain (and taser). This is a dangerous law which will create dangerous, ideologically driven precedents based, not on the rule of law, but on ethnicity. Most American cops are racist to the core so it’s madness to set them loose on an ethnic group they’re already itching to get their hands on. Ask any black man how safe it is to have cops on the beat unleashed on the Mexicans.

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By omygodnotagain, May 1, 2010 at 12:44 pm Link to this comment

If Democrats want to get booted out of office in the fall just follows Bills advice. The Republicans cannot believe their luck. As many have stated here, its the local policing problems that illegals create that make this law necessary.
Sometimes as an Independent and Progrssive I want to strangle PC Democrats

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By REDHORSE, May 1, 2010 at 9:42 am Link to this comment

DAVEZx3:  Pissed?? The “racecard” is an airball! Like you I’m sick of it. The American Left is not any different than the so called Right. Both are controlled by Corporate “Massa” and it is the duty of both to silence dialogue. And, they are both race baiters.

I fully expect a civil war before the end of this century and believe America will split into at least two countries. It is already a nation within a nation and more fractures appear daily. The “racecard” is the primary wedge. Take a look at the repressed rage and confusion alive on this site. Everyone is dreaming of apocalypse and dreams do come true.

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By The Old Hooligan, May 1, 2010 at 8:49 am Link to this comment

The road to Hell is paved with “good intentions.”

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By ProfBob, May 1, 2010 at 8:32 am Link to this comment

it seems to me that if the people who oppose the law will merely reimburse Arizona for the expenses that the illegals are imposing on their citizens—for education, health, and the justice system—Arizona would be delighted to rescind the law. It seems to me that it is merely an economic necessity.

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By sollipsist, May 1, 2010 at 8:13 am Link to this comment

“sollipsist, April 29 at 11:29 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

Is anyone else struck by the irony of the argument:
‘Let’s get the Federal government to step in and force
Arizona to fall in line before we become a police
state’?
************************************************

Really?

I guess you’ve forgotten…[etc.]”

Thank you, but no, I haven’t forgotten. I could even
add a few examples, several of which would not be so
supportive to your glowing view of Federal powers (how
about the DEA vs. paraplegic cancer patients, for
instance?).

Speaking of which, it is impressive to consider how
many people started professing an admiration for the
power and reach of the Federal government in the
period since January 20th, 2009—despite the fact
that its policies do not seem to be any less (or more)
draconian.

Remember all of the left’s pleas to ‘look at Europe’
during the health insurance debate? Well, look at
Europe. You’ll find a majority of countries with great
health insurance who also happen to require that all
adult citizens carry ID, and produce it upon demand of
the police. And there need be no reasonable suspicion
beforehand.

But I may be speaking into the wind here, I
understand. The Socratic method is largely a relic of
pre-Internet days; I should resign myself to either
joining the Ivory tower crowd, preaching to the choir,
or the barbarian troll horde.

Report this

By Ralph Kramden, May 1, 2010 at 1:19 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Isn’t strange how all these anti-immigrant sentiments become vicious when times are hard. The people who fired you or took away your homes, were their last names Gutierrez,Ramirez, Gonzales? Was it these immigrants who led this country into this financial crisis? As Woody Guthrie said: “some rob you with a six-shooter, some with a fountain pen.” So, instead of going after the real gangsters, let’s funnel our anger on the weak and the poor immigrants. The rich undocumented immigrants, they always get away: example? Elvis Presley’s manager. Does scapegoating ring a bell? We stole Arizona from Mexico and now they are coming back. Just desserts. Arizona is the Mississippi of 2010.Boycott Arizona.

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LocalHero's avatar

By LocalHero, May 1, 2010 at 12:40 am Link to this comment

“...are likely to follow with their own police-state rules.”

Where the hell have you been?

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By DaveZx3, April 30, 2010 at 11:53 pm Link to this comment

Boyarsky opens with, “Arizona and its new immigration law offer a frightening preview of the police-state mentality that could envelop other parts of the nation if anti-immigrant hysteria spreads to other states with weak-kneed legislatures and city councils.”

Immigration is a federal matter, but murder and kidnapping are local law enforcement issues in most cases.  Phoenix has almost 1 ransom kidnapping per day, the highest in the country, and second in the world.  Drug related crime, including murder along the border area is totally out of control.  These are local law enforcement issues, which overlap with immigration problems, because these crimes are almost always found to be committed by illegals. 

This is overwhelmingly a law enforcement problem, caused by the outrageous amount of drug trafficing flowing through the Arizona corridor.  It has been established that the majority (some have put it close to 80%)of illegal immigrants crossing into the US already have criminal records.  Many are transporting drugs. 

Why this is being made to appear as an immigration problem is beyond me.  It is clearly about drug traffic and other serious crimes by gangs that have more power than their government.  Criminals do not immigrate, but they cross borders illegally to practice their trade.  Why do we not see the legitimate, law abiding Latino communities coming out against these criminals? 

Boyarsky writes, “Giving police the authority to stop a person on the “reasonable suspicion” he or she is an illegal immigrant clears the way for the arrest of anyone from an American-born Latino doctor to an Indian-American professor to an English immigrant who somehow offended an angry, ignorant or oversensitive police officer”

This is fear-mongering, racist and elitist.  As though it is unthinkable that a doctor might be stopped by a police officer.  Or a professor.  The duty to stop someone who is “reasonably” suspected of committing any crime is inherent within a policeman’s job description.  99% of them carry out this duty day to day with no problems at all.  Boyarsky’s elitist, fear-mongering that an important person might be stopped is stupid and out of place. 

As crime runs rampant, people who are committing the crimes will be put on “Wanted” posters.  People who have those characteristics will probably be stopped.  Is this profiling?  If a 5’10” white guy with a bald spot is seen running from the scene of a crime, I would not be surprised if I was stopped.  Is that profiling? 

If you are stopped, show your ID.  What is so hard about that.  I need to have 3 forms of ID if I am stopped, so what should I do, call the ACLU?  When will law enforcement be allowed to tackle the serious crimes that these drug gangs are causing?

No matter what, everything is labeled racist, and it is my opinion that this is all the left has to maintain the votes of this constituency.  Without racism, the minorities would be free to investigate the real issues that confront them.  And they would find out that the left is just using race to dominate and control the minorities. 

Everything is race to the liberal mentality.  But white people helped to elect a non-white president.  Now they find out they don’t like his politics. So are they now racists?  What were they when they voted for him? 

It is almost impossible to debate politics and crime issues in this country when everything turns into a race issue.  This perpetuation of race, dominating every discussion, is actually coming from the left, so I would suppose that they are, in fact, the racists that they fear most.  They keep race alive by making it the cause of every disagreement that individuals have. 

Racism, to some degree will always be with us.  It is not a crime to say that “white men can’t jump” if it is true.  Evolution has made us all different, and there is nothing wrong with that. I am not a criminal just by talking about it.

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By call me roy, April 30, 2010 at 8:14 pm Link to this comment

The land of illegal immigrants, socialism, and the high taxes to pay for it all. The brutal tax increases will cost the average California family an extra $1,000 a year in taxes. Californians will now pay a 8.25% state sales tax, this makes the total sales as high as 10% depending on the county. This is the highest state sales tax in the nation. Californians will have a quarter percent increase in state income tax and the dependent credit will drop 66%. This move would most likely make California second in highest state income taxes. California vehicle tax will double,making it one of the highest in the nation. The staggering 12 cent increase in state gas tax was nixed to get one more Republican vote. However, Californians already have has the third highest state gas tax in the nation. A brutal .353 cents per gallon.
California leaning towards massive tax hike. California already has some of the highest taxes in the nation to pay for it’s massive illegal alien population and socialist policies. Also because of high taxes and easy access to an illegal work force, California leads the nation in off the books cash only businesses who are not paying taxes. With businesses run out of the state, or simply not paying taxes, California now gets over half it’s revenue from state income tax alone.
Did you know that the state of California gave 432 million dollars worth of welfare and food stamps to illegal aliens in LA County with “anchor babies.” This is just the illegal aliens who are legally receiving welfare under California state law. This doesn’t count the illegals who’s children were born overseas and are fraudulently receiving welfare. The state also spends an estimated 400 million a year for health care for illegal aliens in LA County. With the costs of schooling and incarcerating illegals, the combined strain on the state and county for illegal aliens in LA County is easily in excess of 2 Billion dollars per year.
Nationally, Across America, every state, county, and city is going bankrupt. The state in the worst shape is California which is now 58% non-white. Welfare, free health care, and other public services to immigrants is pushing America to the brink. Instead of closing the border, Obama recently issued a back door amnesty for illegal aliens from Haiti. Even releasing Haitian illegal aliens from detention centers who have already been convicted of crimes in the United States! (From NumbersUSA) Approximately 1/2 of immigrant households (both legal and illegal) with kids access welfare services, primarily food and Medicaid. Many argue that immigration is a social issue, but it’s a fiscal issue as well. The immigrant population has grown by an average of 1.3 million per year since 2000, plus an additional 1 million new births in those households. That’s 23 million new people every decade, and HALF of all immigrant families are using welfare, especially food and Medicaid welfare! This includes illegal AND legal immigrants.

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By call me roy, April 30, 2010 at 8:08 pm Link to this comment

IF YOU CROSS THE NORTH KOREAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET 12 YEARS HARD LABOR.

IF YOU CROSS THE IRANIAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU ARE DETAINED INDEFINITELY.

IF YOU CROSS THE AFGHAN BORDER ILLEGALLY, YOU GET SHOT.

IF YOU CROSS THE SAUDI ARABIAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE JAILED.

IF YOU CROSS THE CHINESE BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU MAY NEVER BE HEARD FROM AGAIN.

IF YOU CROSS THE VENEZUELAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE BRANDED A SPY AND YOUR FATE WILL BE SEALED.

IF YOU CROSS THE MEXICAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE THROWN INTO POLITICAL PRISON TO ROT.

IF YOU CROSS THE U.S. BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET

1 - A JOB,
2 - A DRIVERS LICENSE,
3 - SOCIAL SECURITY CARD,
4 - WELFARE,
5 - FOOD STAMPS,
6 - CREDIT CARDS,
7 - SUBSIDIZED RENT OR A LOAN TO BUY A HOUSE,
8 - FREE EDUCATION,
9 - FREE HEALTH CARE,
10 - A LOBBYIST IN WASHINGTON
11 - BILLIONS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF PUBLIC DOCUMENTS PRINTED IN YOUR LANGUAGE
12 - AND THE RIGHT TO CARRY YOUR COUNTRY’S FLAG WHILE YOU PROTEST THAT YOU DON’T GET ENOUGH RESPECT

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By Marcy, April 30, 2010 at 7:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Maybe it’s because many in my family are Jewish, and my dad (who was Jewish)
served as a U.S. Army officer who led troops into Germany to capture German
officers & troops and help end the Holocaust—but the analogy I heard on talk
radio today says it all: if Arizona police officers want to avoid the issue of asking
the same person for his or her papers more than once, all they have to do is hand
the person who produces proof of citizenship a brown fabric star and instruct
them to sew it on their shirt, blouse or jacket. That way, everyone will know that
they’re “legal.” And THAT wouldn’t be offensive or un-American, now would it?!

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By ghostrider67, April 30, 2010 at 3:09 pm Link to this comment

Hmmmm I wonder when is DNA,blood and urine samples are to become mandatory…
ohh darn..nearly missed it,bloody new episode of the Kardashians just started..wooo hoooo…gotta run now.;will read into this later if nothing else comes up on the tube after this episode..weeee haaaa.

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By T. A. Madison, April 30, 2010 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

“Reasonable suspicion” is not reasonable.  It aims to displace “presumed innocence”.  “Presumed innocence” is a democratic standard in law because the “burden of proof” is structured so that law enforcement is required to establish “probable cause” to justify its actions. 

These phrases, most people know, have to do with bedrock Constitutional Law. Considering that the terms “reasonable” and “suspicion” are vague, note that it leaves interpretation to the enforcing officer, and therefore the shifts the “burden of proof” away from clear standards of police protocol that can be interpreted, if need be, by the Court. 

What constitutes “reasonable” and “suspicious” behavior, however, can scarcely be contested.  It undoes previously clear standards of fairness in protocol required of police.  Such arbitrariness confounds the standards of proof, in effect, confusing our courts about “due process”.  That change leaves little recourse to anyone abused by it.  Everyone should note that.  It becomes more difficult for individuals to hold the police accountable to their own abuses of law enforcement.  It victimizes brown people and uses them to confuse the court about standards of proof.  Therefore, it weakens democratic law as exercised by the court.

An overarching issue to consider is that any government, if it aims at strengthening democratic responsiveness, must be concerned about who polices the police.  The powerful tend to accrue power and therefore don’t have to be scrupulous about exercising it.  Concerned people might cite the phrase “certain unalienable rights” in our Declaration of Independence.  It acknowledges that all people must be FREE in their home and person from “unreasonable search and seizure” to be able to foster “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. 

Changes in law that blur due process provisions in the courts threaten everyone.  “Reasonable suspicion” ends up really being about presumed guilt!  That change in police enforcement and in the courts can only support tyranny.

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By stcfarms, April 30, 2010 at 2:02 pm Link to this comment

Consider this:

On the south side of the line there is as much wealth as there is on the north
side of the line. The problem is that the division between the wealthy and the
poor is so much greater south of the line. If you want to help, teach them
about Simon Bolivar, give them a gun and send them home.

By gerard, April 30 at 4:59 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

If you want to help, Google:  No More Deaths (No Mas Muertas) and find 15 or
so organizations working hard on the problem every day. 

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By Linda Lee, April 30, 2010 at 1:07 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Send every single illegal immigrant home IMMEDIATELY and seal the borders. Period. I am sick of paying for them. If aliens can’t get here legally then they can stay home. There are 30 illegal Mexicans working on my condo roof. The company is American owned but the workers are all illegal. They are stealing the jobs away from 30 legal Americans and their families for the betterment of that corporation. That makes me want to vomit! The employers should be jailed and the illegals need to go back where they came from. They are working on our roadways, bridges, building projects, etc. all over Florida at taxpayers expense. Companies in Florida also get government contracts and then use subcontractors to hire illegals and hide the truth! There are literally tens of thousands of unemployed and underemployed Floridians who need those jobs! I feel the same way about all other nationalities that do not belong here that are sucking the US taxpayer dry. It is time to revolt.

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By gerard, April 30, 2010 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Cnosider this:
  There is a line in the sand.
  On the north side of the line there are jobs.
  On the south side there are no jobs, hence no   money and no food, shelter, clothing.
  You live on the south side and your family are starved, nearly starved or half-starved.
  Would you stay on the south side?
  Or would you try to go north if you possibly could, so you could earn some money and send it back?

Note:  The problem is not the people or the lines. The problem is the vast difference between starvation and eating, sometimes called “economic disparity.”  Capitalism creates “economic disparity” but feels no need to do anything about it. Unless you are hungry, or can imagine what it feels like to be hungry, you will do nothing but kvetch.

If you want to help, Google:  No More Deaths (No Mas Muertas) and find 15 or so organizations working hard on the problem every day. 

.

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By Ajplayer, April 30, 2010 at 12:49 pm Link to this comment

I dislike it when people whom we read and respect haven’t done proper research. Firstly, the law has not yet gone into effect.  Secondly, the way the law reads is that someone must be stopped for an illegal act in the first place and then if there is “reasonble grounds” to ask for ID they can. In my state I have my drivers license at all times (illegal to drive without it) and I don’t have a problem with that.  What’s wrong with having to carry some sort of ID on your person showing residency/legality.

I too am a liberal Democrat and live in an area with a lot of hispanics. However I find it unreasonable to equate race with illegality. In short, it is illegal for “llegals” to be here. duh! The Feds don’t have a solution so it comes down to the state level to find an answer. Maybe there are too many people in Mexico? Tell the pope.

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By Jameel, April 30, 2010 at 12:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How obtuse are you white people?  Don’t you understand that this law goes FAR beyond just questioning “illegals” as to their status?  This means even YOU could be subjected to police harassment because some cop doesn’t like you and demands proof of your citizenship or legal immigration status…because hey, you might turn out to be one of those weaslish Canucks trying to pass yourself off as an Anglo American!

It’s one thing to protect our borders and our labor pool from the influx of illegal immigrants, and completely another thing to give police free reign to decide who they think is in this country legally and who isn’t.  This law is abuse just waiting to happen.

I guess if you’re American and brown like me (mixed Punjabi and Irish/Cherokee in my case, born in Alabama), you’d best carry your passport and/or your birth certificate with you if you go to Arizona, otherwise they’ll throw you in jail for being brown, too.  I went to University of Arizona in Tucson for my bachelor’s and know first-hand that the cops in Arizona just don’t like brown people, no matter what race they are from.  This law is stupid and dehumanizing.

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By erfolg, April 30, 2010 at 12:08 pm Link to this comment

it sounds really bad…

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By Jameel, April 30, 2010 at 11:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

WayneK, unless you carry your birth certificate and passport with you at all times, YOU could be the next one thrown in the slammer for failing to prove your citizenship, you ignoramus.  Get a clue.

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By WayneK, April 30, 2010 at 10:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

About time a state had the balls to do something.  Good luck AZ, I hope this spreads to other states.  I have nothing against Mexicans.  I speak Spanish.  My wife is from another country.  She came here LEGALLY.  Stop bleeding for criminals.  Send them all back.

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By Where's the Beef, April 30, 2010 at 6:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I used to live in AZ and will make it apoint to go back and vacation there this year.

As a sign of support for the citizens there who have the courage to make a stand against the illegal invasion of Mexican foreign Nationals….

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By Inherit The Wind, April 30, 2010 at 3:34 am Link to this comment

Carl, April 30 at 2:27 am #

Illegal immigrants are not descendants of people who once lived in the USA. They are not “returning”.
Some fool on CNN was saying that its “our” fault that illegals come here, because “we” hire them. I don’t, I can’t get a job. I hope the Feds deport 1000 illegals tomorrow from Las Vegas so I can find work.

My Hualipai Indians friends at Grand Canyon haven’t been called to work all week as tourism is down because some rich foolish white folks decided they are racist.

Then the corporate news here runs stories about how some illegals are afraid of the law. May I suggest that they pack up and move back home where they belong. If they want to move here, apply for a visa.
************************************************

I’m sure if you are willing to day work for a 10-12 hour day for $10-$12/hour at back-breaking labor, you’d have little trouble getting a job.  But you’d only keep it if you could keep up with those guys you want kicked out.  Plus, one complaint about unfair or unsafe working conditions and you’d never work at that again.

The illegals fill a need, and businesses who hire them have that need.  It’s for workers willing to work longer hours for less than the legal going rate.

I recently just changed jobs and I had to provide proof of my right to work in this country, despite being a third generation American, Caucasian, and lifetime resident.  I actually needed a NOTARIZED copy of my passport. I’m not in a “seasonal” industry so they are super-careful.

I’m sorry you are out of work. I, too, was a statistic for 4 months last year. Been there, done that, collected the unemployment.

But your unemployment, hard to believe, is NOT caused by the illegals.

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By Joe G, April 30, 2010 at 12:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Let’s all stay away from anywhere that I claim you should stay away from!

#1) Massachusetts. Really? “Calm chowder”? We chowder down on beef around here boy!

#2) Texas. I will mess with you if I want too (DICKS)

#3) California. Your prostitution of real estate is the reason we are not getting rich! (yuck)

#4) Wisconsin! YES Wisconsin! Your cheese is not that good, and don’t think for a second that I am not privy to your cheese hustling shenanigans!

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By stcfarms, April 29, 2010 at 11:08 pm Link to this comment

To see how Mexicans treat Indians ask the Maya of Chiapas, or just Google it.

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By Carl, April 29, 2010 at 10:27 pm Link to this comment

Illegal immigrants are not descendants of people who once lived in the USA. They are not “returning”.
Some fool on CNN was saying that its “our” fault that illegals come here, because “we” hire them. I don’t, I can’t get a job. I hope the Feds deport 1000 illegals tomorrow from Las Vegas so I can find work.

My Hualipai Indians friends at Grand Canyon haven’t been called to work all week as tourism is down because some rich foolish white folks decided they are racist.

Then the corporate news here runs stories about how some illegals are afraid of the law. May I suggest that they pack up and move back home where they belong. If they want to move here, apply for a visa.

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By gerard, April 29, 2010 at 9:34 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

To do something constructive to help this miserable situation, Google NO MORE DEATHS (no mas muertas) and find contact numbers for 15 or 20 humanrights and reigious organizations working constantly for fairness and justice.  They need your help.

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By ronjeremy, April 29, 2010 at 6:26 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

let arizona do what they wish.  those who want to live there can live there, those who want to live somewhere else can live somewhere else.  fifty states and fifty different places, that is one of the wonderful things about the us&a.  gambling-live here, dry county-live here, mountains-live here, lax marijuana laws-live here, low taxes-live here,plenty of/no churches-live here, etc… by the way, thanks for posting the link to the law.  just like health care and the patriot act, people write and talk about stuff without actually reading the actual bill/law.  i always wonder how many people who have such strong opinions actually have encounters with illegal(or legal) immigrants.  their opinions are very different.  it is easy to know why, especially if you are a victim of violence (or your roommate’s brother and his friend where jumped by a group of them) or have lost a job to a member of said group.  on another rambling note, i work in south korea and everyone on a work visa is required to carry it at all times.  is that racist or nazi? if it is, would everyone please write letters of protest

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By stcfarms, April 29, 2010 at 6:02 pm Link to this comment

Sort them out with a DNA test, those that had a relative living here October
11th 1492 stay, those that did not have a relative here October 11th 1492 are
sent to Spain. Now for the ‘white’ problem…

By melpol, April 29 at 9:35 pm #

It is wrong labeling those swimming across the Rio Grande as trespassers.
They are as indigenous to the US as the Cactus plants growing throughout the
Southwest. We must help our Mexican neighbors return to their ancestral land.
There Is enough space for us all.

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By melpol, April 29, 2010 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment

It is wrong labeling those swimming across the Rio Grande as trespassers. They are as indigenous to the US as the Cactus plants growing throughout the Southwest. We must help our Mexican neighbors return to their ancestral land. There Is enough space for us all.

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By Carl, April 29, 2010 at 5:25 pm Link to this comment

Wow, you guys are doing a great job fooling the rubes. This is exactly what all us CEOs want to happen. Us Republicans were talking yesterday at the club of how no one would accept open borders under Bush, but now we got our boy Obama in there to encourage a few million more foreigner workers over here to push down wages and bust unions.

Do you think Obama will help lower the minimum wage? If you guys at Truthdig could do some BS articles on that too, we’d be sure to send you even more money. You know, lower wages means more jobs. We got Obama to increase military spending even more! I think he will step up and open our borders to get our wages down to Mexico’s level so we can make huge profits.

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By Karl, April 29, 2010 at 4:52 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am not a right-wing, tea party, racist, “birther” nut-job. I am a liberal, gay,
tree-hugging, atheist Democrat who is tired of seeing average Arizonans
belittled for having honest concerns about illegal immigration. Some journalists
have even compared Arizona to Nazi Germany. Yes that’s right, they would have
you believe that Arizona literally plans to round up “brown-skinned” people,
put them in cattle cars, and then gas them to death. Other journalists have
poured their hearts out, giving impassioned pleas for sympathy and human
kindness. Of coarse none of this is directed at the ordinary legal residents of
Arizona who are going broke fighting crime and trying to keep our over-
burdened social service programs going. All this caring and sympathy is being
dolled out for people who have deliberately broken U.S. law. The people of
Arizona are rightly sick and tired of hearing president after president, and both
political parties, shake their fists and vow to enact “comprehensive immigration
reform”, and then do nothing. We’re tired of kidnappings, home invasions and
identity thefts. Some communities are so concerned about identity theft,
largely committed by illegals trying to obtain legal employment credentials,
that they’ve opted to pass on home mailbox delivery, choosing instead to drive
to their p.o. box every day.  The once-beautiful Sonora desert is turning into a
dumping ground for passing illegal immigrants, strewn with plastic water jugs
and discarded backpacks. Small Native American settlements are frequently
victimized by illegal immigrant break-ins, vandalism and violence. The
existence of a strong middle class is only possible with a slight labor shortage,
which is simply impossible when we have a never-ending stream of cheap labor
pouring across our borders. Not surprisingly, Ronald Reagan offered amnesty
to millions of illegal immigrants, obviously payback to big-business which
benefits from depressed wages caused by an over-supply of willing workers.
Arizona recently enacted strict employer penalties for knowingly hiring
“undocumented workers”. Predictably, even that is being challenged in court by
the pro-illegal immigrant crowd. Conducting a national census is entirely
pointless if we make no effort to enforce our immigration laws. Sometimes
being a good American means making a few small sacrifices for the common
good. All Americans should be interested in stopping the flow of Illegal aliens
into our country, and if that means possibly being inconvenienced by a request
for proof of citizenship, we should all be happy to do our part. An honest,
grown-up, unemotional, critical analysis of this law reveals that it simply calls
for the state of Arizona to enforce existing federal laws. Calling this law “racist”
or implying that Arizona is a hateful place, is cheap, lazy, trash can journalism.

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By SWAIN, April 29, 2010 at 4:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

WHY DO THE SUPPORTERS OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION NEVER USE THE
WORD ILLEGAL MAYBE ITS BECAUSE their little brains GETS A HICCUP WHEN
ITS FORCED TO BE TRUTHFUL. IF YOU SUPPORT ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION SAY
IT DON’T CALL IT IMMIGRATION BECAUSE THAT IS A COWARDS LIE.

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By Mark Dolce, April 29, 2010 at 4:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I like the comment section more than article because the article is typical in
that i offers nothing positive to remedy the problem of illegal immigration. The
federal government has forsaken their responsibility to protect our borders.
Every country (almost, probably not Somalia) has immigration laws/policies
that are upheld by the government. Why doesn’t the Unite States? I am not in
favor of racial profiling - but his is a racial issue - immigration is a racial issue.
The racial profile aspect of this new law is scary. It states in the new law anyone
whose civil or human rights are violated can sue. This my be of little
consolation but if a person is legally in the United States - then they do not
have to worry - and millions if immigrants are. The knee jerk reactions - both
right and left wing - do nothing to help solve the problem of illegal
immigration. Laws that are unconstitutional are passed all the time by the
federal government; invading iraq, the loss of habeas corpus, racially profiling
prisoners for Guantanamo, wiretapping without a warrant ... the Patriot Act. I
am glad the law was signed by Arizona - not because illegals need to be
arrested but because it has brought national attention to a nation issue. People
are dying at the border in AZ - not just illegals. The environment is being
ruined. The county hospitals are maxed out, taxes go up to pay for services to
people who need care but are not citizens of the US and cost is shifted to the
state, county and citizens of Arizona.  The Tohono O’odham tribe cannot
migrate back and forth over the border for their tribal and ritualistic practices -
which they have doing long before the border was created. If the justice
department decides the new AZ law is unconstitutional that would only be half
the battle. the other half id immigration reform - an issue long ignored by our
government. Stop pointing fingers, stop playing the race card because the race
card works both ways. Fix the problem and stop reverting to Fascist and Nazi
comparisons ... and boycotting Az is not going to help. US citizens never
stopped paying taxes after all the unconstitutional laws that have been passed
already mentioned. And that’s another thing; how many immigrants that are
illegal say they want to come to America to vote, pay taxes or uphold the US
Constitution or Bill of Rights? The immigrants who become naturalized do so
and do it legally. Sure, poverty and persecution are valid reasons to come to
America and have a better way of life but not good enough to do it illegally. so,
let’s get the immigrants who are already to sign up for naturalization, give
them the proper avenue to become a citizen and get them to pay taxes and
eventually a social security number. Funnel the immigrants that who travel
through Mexico who treats them 10 times worse than we do - toward receiving
stations at our borders and feed them, clothe them, give them water and
process them as human being into becoming US citizens.

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By stcfarms, April 29, 2010 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment

White people and brown people are ready to kill each other over who gets to
keep stolen Indian land, I cannot wait…

By SICK AND TIRED, April 29 at 4:00 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

IT’S SIMPLE: LEARN ENGLISH BEFORE YOU GET YOUR ASS OVER HERE, RESPECT
TRUE AMERICANS !!  WE BUILT ALL THIS SO KEEP BUILDING. DON’T EXPECT ME
TO FEED YOUR ASS EITHER !

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By Jessie Pinkman, April 29, 2010 at 3:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Feds failed (again) at one of the few jobs they are actually supposed to do.

A State has therefore tried to do *something*.

And the author of this piece doesn’t appear to even understand the law.

So called ‘New Democrats’ don’t have much beyond calling everyone/everything that they don’t understand “racist”. Come on, grow up.

Some of us were told that since we don’t buy insurance, we’re “freeloaders” and therefore need a mandate enforced by the IRS.

It doesn’t dawn on them that “undocumented” folks are freeloaders too.

Oh well, at least there are plenty of jobs for those that want to work!

If democrats really wanted to help those poor Mexicans they’d help overthrow the 12 corrupt families that hold that entire country hostage.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 29, 2010 at 1:36 pm Link to this comment

sollipsist, April 29 at 11:29 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

Is anyone else struck by the irony of the argument: ‘Let’s get the Federal government to step in and force Arizona to fall in line before we become a police state’?
************************************************

Really?

I guess you’ve forgotten how US Marshalls had to step in to FORCE the end to segregation. 
I guess you’ve forgotten the Civil Rights and Voting Right Acts, where the Federal government had to step in FINALLY to force an end to Jim Crow laws.

There’s no irony at all. Despite the general assumption, corruption and assumption of power illegally gets WORSE the more local the government gets.

Also, as much flack as Federal Govt workers gets, state workers are less efficient and local workers are usually worse.

So…on average, I trust the Federal Govt more than state governments—as the Confederate History celebrations and this law show.

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By Peaceandquiet, April 29, 2010 at 12:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Me thinks (out-of-state) people are getting too uptight over this.
Citizens in Arizona just want safe communities again. Its obvious the
criminal element has taken over.

Sad to say this “papers please” effort has to be done, but what else
can be done? Not much can or will be done. The cheap labor illegals
bring means to much to the rich. And there are probably a lot of
other Americans benefiting as well.  Its all about the money.

“Police state” you cry? We already live in a soviet-style police state.
Probably much worse than the one the soviets had.

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By SICK AND TIRED, April 29, 2010 at 12:00 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

IT’S SIMPLE: LEARN ENGLISH BEFORE YOU GET YOUR ASS OVER HERE, RESPECT TRUE AMERICANS !!  WE BUILT ALL THIS SO KEEP BUILDING. DON’T EXPECT ME TO FEED YOUR ASS EITHER !

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By P. T., April 29, 2010 at 11:29 am Link to this comment

Given his pro-Israel stance, Bill Boyarsky’s (and that of congressional Democrats) concern for the treatment of Hispanics in the U.S. is interesting.  In case he hasn’t noticed, Israel’s treatment of Palestinians is far harsher.

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By REDHORSE, April 29, 2010 at 11:21 am Link to this comment

NO LONGER INTERESTED: Here in New Mexico I’ve been spit on—had a gun pointed at me—was knocked down in a parking lot for no reason (I’m 64) and have had enough bad encounters with illegals that I now carry a weapon in my car. (By the way, not always, but in many cases you can tell an illegal from an American Latino.) There is an actual invasion in progress fueled by a black market economy that has turned the border into a warzone. I don’t care what color anybody is. I’m sick of the “racecard” and the #@&k’s that play it. I’d just like to go to the supermarket without arming myself.

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By waldon, April 29, 2010 at 9:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

In the development of the American police state, the pattern you see constantly is that a particular emotional issue is stirred up to then give the police sweeping power that goes far beyond that issue.

In this case, completely ignore immigration.  That’s the emotional issue used to justify this.

Instead, focus on the simple fact that in Arizona the police now have the power to stop and question and ask for papers of anyone, anytime, anywhere.

————————————-
To someone who grew up in the Cold War era, this is striking.  We were of course constantly ‘educated’ in how America was far superior to Russia.  One of the examples constantly used was how in Russia one was not allowed to travel without ‘papers’.  How the government used to setup roadblocks and used ‘papers’ to control its citizens.

In my lifetime, I’ve seen America move closer and closer to that Soviet policy.  First it was ‘drugs’, and how the police needed the ability to set up roadblocks and stop every car to fight evil ‘drugs’.  Now its ‘Mexicans’.  Now the police need the right to be able to stop anyone, anytime, anywhere to stop ‘illegal immigrants’.

Forget the reasons they give. Just notice how traveling in America today is starting to look a lot like traveling in the old Soviet Union ....  “Papers please.”

These people wrap themselves in the flag and proclaim themselves Americans and tell us how patriotic they are.  But this is the most ‘Anti-American’ thing I’ve seen in ages.

Instead of drinking beer with Sam Adam’s fake picture on the label, ask yourself instead how old Sam Adams might have responded to such an un-american attack on our liberties.

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By j1992, April 29, 2010 at 9:29 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Judging by comments on many websites and news reports
online, This whole nation is on the brink of
collapse.  The attitude of the American People
concerning what Arizona has done is very frightening. 
The American people are justifying Racial
Discrimination in order to save the “Homeland”.  Nazi
Germany all over.  A major catastrophe is upon us. 
Soon China the New Sleeping Giant will have to intervene to stop fascist Amerika and there will be
Trials and have the likes of Arpaio, and Pearce pay
for their crimes.  Great, that’s the good part, the
bad part, Amerika will lay in RUINS by then.  Just
take a “good look” around, this country is already
DESOLATE, in common sense and respect for “all human
dignity” But “damned those Immigrants” is the moral
high ground.  The West has already been “Checkmate”. 
China and all Asia is looking mighty good already. 
When we go there, I hope they treat us just as good
as we treated those that did not look Anglo-Saxon.  I
personally am nip tucking my eyes to look coolly
ASIAN!!!!

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By TheBrix57, April 29, 2010 at 8:10 am Link to this comment

Illegal immigration is a problem that has been around for several decades with the Federal government ignoring it for the same amount of time. The impact has been felt in many ways for that amount of time. Look at wages for low to middle class Americans that have been stagnant for 30+ years.

Perhaps many of you see this as happening to someone else, but the manufacturing plant where I work will only hire Latino for their production workers. Granted, they may have one of those one million plus work visas that were granted in the last couple of years, but they are taking jobs away from Americans that could use it. Then, with all the extended family members visiting and never leaving only increases the problem. These workers have no intention of assimilating into American culture.

An interesting phenomenon has happened where people seem to be outraged when perhaps being asked to “show their papers” to identify themselves, yet have no problem when asked for a drivers’ license when operating a vehicle. Many illegal immigrants operate vehicles without licenses or insurance and the fines for doing so are minimal. Ask the people that have been in accidents with these unlicensed and uninsured drivers.

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By dihey, April 29, 2010 at 8:10 am Link to this comment

I am at a total loss of understanding why I, who went to a state with much worse and truly “racist” laws than this Arizona abomination during the civil rights struggles to demonstrate together with residents of that state, should refrain from going to Arizona and participate in their protests to show my solidarity.  Bill, where is your solidarity? Buried?

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By no longer interested, April 29, 2010 at 7:47 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I lived close to the Mexican border near Tucson.  Hardly any of these posters know the real problem in these areas.  Way over 50% of illegals caught coming across the border already have a criminal record.  Many are transporting drugs. 

They come back and forth almost at will, and while in the USA commit additional crimes.  Phoenix is close to being the kidnap capital of the world, now ranking #2.  There is about 1 ransom kidnapping per day in Phoenix, and there are so many law enforcement officers responding to kidnapping crimes that this alone will eventually bankrupt the city and state.  The overwhelming majority of these crimes are traced to illegal immigrants. 

The majority of law abiding legal Latino immigrants are afraid to buck the drug lords, and will not support anything that enforces border security, even though secretly they would love to, as they certainly understand the situation does not put them in a good position, even though they are legal and hard-working.

Where is the justice for the legals, and where is the justice for the citizens of Arizona who are having their neighborhoods turned into high-crime areas?  Why are these issues not spoken of?  All I hear is the loud voice of those who apparently wish no law enforcement on this issue.  Why do criminals get such heavy support from the loud mouths? 

What is so hard about securing a border?  What is so bad about being asked for your ID when stopped by the police.  When I was a kid I had a hot rod.  Was I not profiled?  Of course I was.  I expected it, so I kept my nose clean and had my license and registration ready at all times.  It is the nature of the beast.  Why shouldn’t the police suspect young kids with hot rods, when that was where most of the drag racing on the streets was coming from? 

If crime is coming from a majority of people illegally crossing the border, you either have to stop them from coming in, or have an agressive program to find them once they are in.  Since the US has let millions sneak over here, the burden becomes finding them and at least separating the bad ones and sending them back.  The ones who wish to work and work to become legal are another story. 

In Mexico you go to jail for two years for illegally crossing into that country.  That is the law, and it is aggressively enforced along with other very tough laws on illegal immigrants in Mexico.

This story is not about taking care of the poor Latino wanting to support his family.  It is about the trillion dollar drug trade and all who profit.  It is about Democrats wanting the additional votes, and it is about Business wanting the cheap labor. 

Like so many other liberal agendas, it never really turns out to be for the underclass, but for the benefit of the fat classes, including the drug lords.

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By sollipsist, April 29, 2010 at 7:29 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Is anyone else struck by the irony of the argument: ‘Let’s get the Federal government to step in and force Arizona to fall in line before we become a police state’?

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By Inherit The Wind, April 29, 2010 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

Illegal immigration is a multifaceted problem that cannot be solved with idiot racist “solutions” like Arizona has implemented.

EVERY action you can contemplate will have vast unintended consequences.

Say, we manage to get rid of every illegal immigrant working in the seasonal agricultural farming biz—the CLASSIC “bracero” fruit picker.  This is just one extrapolation:
1) Price of labor to pick fruit will rise.
2) Some growers will go out of business
3) Other growers will have to employ fewer pickers
4) They won’t be able to grow as many bushels, or sell as many.
5) THEIR contributions to local economies will fall, really putting aggie counties in big trouble.
6) Supplies of fruit across the US will fall
7) Prices of fruit will rise.
8) Inflation nationally will rise
9) Foreign fruit growers will have an opportunity to undercut American growers and import their fruit and sell it cheaper.
10) More American fruit growers will go under.
11) The trade deficit will increase creating downward pressure on the dollar.
12) The dollar will fall causing OTHER imports to become more expensive, further fueling inflation.

All of these consequences are real, documented and easily confirmed—it’s simple straight-forward college-level economic analysis—any sophomore econ major should be able to do this in his/her sleep.

And this is only the analysis of ONE aspect of the issue.  Each of the other issues will have equally vast impacts.  This was only one quill on the porcupine that is the illegal immigration issue.

This is why, in one of his very, VERY few wise moves, George Bush dodged the issue for 8 years.

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By melpol, April 29, 2010 at 7:21 am Link to this comment

Pedro is a skilled Mexican construction worker and he no longer wants to remain unemployed. He knows many friends that have illegally crossed the border and are living well. They write that many construction jobs are available for between 10 and 15 bucks an hour. Pedro is single without family obligations, so he hops on his burro and is on his way to a good job in the land of opportunity. This story is real and has happened 20 million times. It is wrong to blame Pedro for overcoming laws that try to keep a good man south of the border.

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By skulz fontaine, April 29, 2010 at 6:49 am Link to this comment

Arizona. The ‘Grand Racist State’. The Arizona legislation is about
discrimination. Only about discrimination and that’s all it’s about. Police-state
mentality and dogging on the browns. Cause if’n you’s brown in Arizona well
you can kiss your ass goodbye. The Arizona ‘white’ folk are a dwindling
minority in Arizona and they are very much losing their voter registration edge.
That is what’s at issue here. Sheriff Nazi Joe merely acts out in public the
dictates of ‘white’ rule in Arizona. Arpaio is a buffoon.
Illegal immigration isn’t at issue here. Migrants can’t afford an outrageously
over-priced immigration process and that’s the problem. Immigration is cost
prohibitive and there are so many hoops ANY migrant must jump through and
continue to pay for, over and over again, it’s just NOT worth their time or
effort. The immigration process is inherently corrupt. As are the nice ICE
“officials” that shake down migrants routinely.
Arizona is about the business of singling out brown people. For harassment,
for detention, for deportation, for possible murder. Oh yeah, you don’t think
that Sheriff Nazi Joe won’t use “force” while dealing with brownskinned people,
think again. Sheriff Nazi Joe would bring smile to the face of Adolf Hitler.
Yeah, it’d be wise to stay the hell away from Arizona for the next little while. At
least until Arizona government can explain their racism to the U.S. Supreme
Court.

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By kt2kelly, April 29, 2010 at 6:17 am Link to this comment

How come this is not a illegal employer problem?Why is
it we always place the blame on the poor defenseless
worker who is just doing the very things each and every
one of us would do in the same circumstances?How come
we are not discussing the billions of dollars that
would otherwise flow into the US Treasury,if these
suspect employers were to pay taxes on legitimate
workers?What does this Arizona law say about that?
NOTHING!An ATTACK on illegal immigration is just a
precursor for the eventual and inevitable attack on us
ALL!!!!!!!!!!

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By secretarybird, April 29, 2010 at 6:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is very reminiscent of the notorious “sus” laws in Britain a few years ago. Guess the skin colour of 80% of those stopped by police officers on suspicion of doing something illegal.

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By rufus, April 29, 2010 at 5:18 am Link to this comment

I feel the same way that most people do about illegal immagration but don’t get carried away.The only way to make this law constitutional is to require every one to carry a national identity card so that they can prove any time and any place that they belong here. are you prepared to do that? would you pass the screening process? Are you sure?

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By SoTexGuy, April 29, 2010 at 5:04 am Link to this comment

The problem is illegal immigration.

Mr. Boyarsky is quite right to denounce police-state conditions in Arizona, or anywhere. The thing is.. we have that now most everywhere in the United States.. it is apparently only the implication that racial discrimination is a driving factor that rankles him.

Again, the problem is illegal immigration.

Deep south Texas is an armed camp. The big new vehicles of every department of Homeland Security are ubiquitous as are heavily armed officers. Our State Parks and Wildlife department uses $350K special assault boats in our waters and carry automatic weapons. One local cash-strapped county has acquired an armored assault vehicle.

Because especially of where I drive I am questioned by armed federal officers practically daily.. as I am not Hispanic this won’t attract the ire of Mr. Boyarsky..

FYI: for some years now it has been routine for everyone attempting to leave our area to be stopped and interviewed by armed Federal officers. I’m not referring to crossing the border into the USA.. these are roadblocks 100 miles north of here, deep in the heart of Texas. They put the dogs on our vehicles, scan us.. who knows? This is our life..

Welcome to the USA Mr. Boyarsky! I take your views about the civil liberties of immigrants and everyone seriously.. and agree it’s a problem.. But critics of what’s happening in Arizona and in other places in America need to understand..

The problem is illegal immigration.

Fix the problem and things will get better for everyone.

Adios!

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By Miguel, April 29, 2010 at 4:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Well, here’s the start of FACISM in America. It just has to start in one place, then it will spread.
Those of you in support of this bill, well, you’re extreamly blind, and, as far as I’m concerned, you are all racists.
Come to think of if, America has always been a racists country, own by whites mostly, but just kept telling itself it was not.
Yea, right!
I’m glad I don’t live in America anymore. It’s all going to hell.

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By Bob, April 29, 2010 at 4:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What is frustrating to me is that most in the media who are writing about the
law have obviously not read it.  I’ve included a link so you can actually read
what it says.  The important part that everyone is missing is that there has to
be a lawful contact before immigration status is questioned.  That means that a
person cannot be stopped or contacted based on their race or other illegal
means. 

http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/49leg/2r/bills/sb1070s.pdf 

There is nothing about this bill that allows a police officer to stop and/or arrest
a person simply because they think they “look” illegal.

And, Mr.Boyarsky, how much investigating did you do regarding the story of
the truck driver that was required to obtain his birth certificate?  I am betting
that there is a lot more information regarding the incident that you have failed
to put in your article.  Did you talk to (or even try to talk to) anybody other than
the truck driver and his family?  I bet that there is a public record that could
shed some light on what actually happened. 

The scary thing is that people read stories like this and think it is factual.  Most
people don’t take the time to research facts and rely on journalists, such as Mr.
Boyarsky, to provide them with legitimate and valid information.  The new state
law in Arizona is not a lengthy document, so please read it before you profess
to know it.

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By ardee, April 29, 2010 at 4:45 am Link to this comment

mmadden, April 29 at 8:38 am

Your attitude is sad indeed, and your facts are questionable as well. I am hopeful that your opinion is in the small minority of American citizens, most of whom will , I trust, recognize how very unAmerican they are.

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By mmadden, April 29, 2010 at 4:38 am Link to this comment

I am hoping that this policy concerning illegal immigrants is enacted across the country. These illegals are bringing the drug war to the States. If you are an illegal immigant you can look forward to being deported. This is the policy in other countries. In some countries even harsher methods are used to take of illegal immigrants. In Mexico the Army shoots Guatemalen citizens trying to cross the border.

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By cwbystache, April 29, 2010 at 4:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“First they came for the homosexuals,” I said to fellow Arizonans when we changed the Arizona constitution last year to prohibit gay people from marrying, “so, who’s next?”  And so it comes.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 29, 2010 at 3:55 am Link to this comment

I plan to.  With our younger child being adopted from Central America, there is NO WAY we will go there.  Arizona now reminds me of Mississippi in 1963.

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By bogi666, April 29, 2010 at 3:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This is a test case for the creation of an official police state for the USA which is already a national security state. How obscene it is that the Sheriff of Phoenix runs the country.

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