United Against Arizona S.B. 1070
by The Opportunity Agenda, Fri Apr 30, 2010 at 12:52:57 PM EDT
Since its inception, America has been considered a land of opportunity for people around the world. The fabric of our nation is woven by the immigrant experience. And its colorful patchwork is a living witness to America’s success.
This is why Arizona's new immigration law is so wrong. The law is impractical, violates our values, and divides our communities. We need real solutions that embrace fairness, equal treatment, and due process. Our immigration system is broken, but disregarding our values is not the answer to fixing it.
The Arizona State legislature recently passed a bill entitled, “Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act” (S.B. 1070), which, among other provisions:
-Requires police officers to make a reasonable attempt to determine the immigration status of a person whenever there is a “reasonable suspicion” that the person is unlawfully present and verify that status with the federal government;
-Gives police officers authority to conduct warrantless arrests of persons for whom the officer has probable cause to believe have committed any public offense that makes those persons deportable;
-Establishes a separate state offense, with attendant criminal penalties, for any person to violate provisions of the federal immigration law regarding registration and carrying registration documents—making it a state crime for a person to be an undocumented immigrant under federal law;
-Makes it a criminal offense to attempt to hire or pick up day laborers to work at a different location if the driver is impeding the normal flow of traffic, for a worker to get into a car if it is impeding traffic, or for an undocumented immigrant to solicit work (by a gesture or nod) in any public place;
-Mandates the impoundment of any vehicle used to transport, move, conceal, harbor, or shield an undocumented immigrant.
This law is racial profiling, pure and simple. And singling people out based only on stereotyping isn’t just wrong, it’s also bad policing. Our communities need Congress to focus on workable solutions that uphold our values, and move us all forward together. Fixing our immigration system the right way is about what kind of country we want to be. This law certainly illustrates what we don’t want to become.
Read more at The Opportunity Agenda website.