Austin, TX – The Washington Post editorial board published a new piece detailing why SB4, the Republican-led racially discriminatory bill that Gov. Greg Abbott signed in May, is an assault on people of color in Texas.
According to Mario Carrillo:
As noted routinely during the state’s legislative session and beyond, SB4 will encourage racial profiling by allowing local law enforcement officers to ask about someone’s immigration status during any interaction. This measure will force immigrants further into the shadows and will create fear and uncertainty in Texas’ diverse communities.
Texas is home to 11 million Latinos, and our power and presence is only growing. But to be clear, SB4 is bigger than Texas. It goes against the values that of our country and must be stopped.
“Texas’s new law on immigration policy is a blow to good policing” is excerpted below and available online here.
Texas’s new statute, which takes effect in September, is in some ways more draconian than Arizona’s notorious “show me your papers” law, enacted in 2010. Under the guise of cracking down on so-called sanctuary cities and counties, it effectively wrests control of police departments and sheriff’s offices from commanders whose priorities, in some cases, include cultivating good relations with Hispanic communities.
The measure dealt a blow to good policing in a state that prides itself on law and order. That was made clear in a public statement drafted by a group of police chiefs from around the state, led by those in Houston and Dallas, who warned that it would discourage Hispanic victims and witnesses from reporting crimes and interacting with officers, for fear they could be asked about their immigration status and risk deportation. The chiefs called the measure “political pandering that will make our communities more dangerous.
The law faces legal challenges from the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups, which hope federal courts will regard it as an affront to civil liberties and an invitation to racial profiling. A federal judge in San Antonio heard arguments on the caseMonday. Coupled with a recent federal court ruling that found that lawmakers in Austin had intentionally gerrymandered congressional districts to dilute minority voting power, it suggests that state officials are eager to keep Texas a bad place to not be white.