Outrageous. Contemptible. What else is there to say about Arizona’s stunningly racist new anti-immigration law?
And, by the way, I use the “R” word without the slightest hesitation. The label “racist” is often bandied about referring to unconscious or indirect actions that happen to discriminate against certain groups. But there’s nothing subtle about the Arizona legislation. It is shamelessly, openly racist – it orders police to investigate those who happen to look, ethnically, like what a police officer might assume are “immigrants”. What they look like. So – describe for me what an immigrant to Arizona looks like without mentioning race. You can’t do it, can you?
Seriously, if that’s not “racist”, what is? The state Capitol was appropriately daubed in frijoles in the shape of a swastika:
As Weezil points out – you can’t spell “A-r-i-z-o-n-a” without “n-a-z-i”…
Those from an unfavoured ethnic group have to carry papers or they’ll be fined and imprisoned. I can’t think of any historic parallels to that, can you?
Ludicrously, in the video on Weezil’s link above, Governor Jan Brewer shamelessly denies that the law will be applied against racial groups – even though it’s clearly what her voters are assuming. Otherwise you’d think they’d be just as worried as other groups: if the law applies to everyone regardless of race, then Arizona is now a complete police state, and all citizens must carry papers wherever they go. Including white Republican voters. If they’re not outraged, it must be because they know, really, that it’ll never be used against them. Brewer’s disingenuous claims that “race” and “colour” will have nothing to do with it are not believed even by her supporters. They know they can’t admit that it’s “racial profiling”, because that’s against federal law – so they’re going to pretend that the bill is not race-based whilst simultaneously reassuring each other that they’re quite safe from its harshest effects because of their race.
It’s difficult to believe that anyone could even begin to try to defend this abomination against human rights. Then again, there are a lot of people in this country who assume that anyone seeking asylum who arrives on a boat is “illegal”. Our supposedly “left-wing” government is locking people up in the desert indefinitely without charge on our behalf – and supposedly many agree with them. So maybe it’s not just an Arizona thing.
Good people can support really, really horrible things when they get scared about immigration.
UPDATE: Perhaps Google Maps will now need to implement an “avoid Arizona” function?