Last week, a group of Arizona clergy, including Catholic and Methodist bishops and Evangelical pastors, felt called to mount an “emergency delegation” to Washington to “prod, encourage and advocate” (as Catholic Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson told the Los Angeles Times) for passage of comprehensive immigration reform and a delay in putting Arizona law SB 1070 into effect. During a meeting with their senator John McCain, the faith leaders bore witness to the lessons they’ve learned ministering to Arizonans: border security is only one part of an effective and humane solution to our broken immigration system that only leaders in Washington will be able to build.
Lakers star Kobe Bryant’s wife, Vanessa, took a jab at Coach Phil Jackson, who has refused to denounce Arizona’s paper’s-please law, even after “Los Suns” made a strong statement earlier this month. Vanessa, pictured to the right here, is sporting a “Do I look illegal?” tee. Arizona’s Governor, Jan Brewer, has admitted that she has clue what an “illegal immigrant looks like.”
Violent crime has been steadily decreasing in Arizona, but you wouldn’t know it by listening to AZ’s Governor, Jan Brewer—or GOP superstar, Sarah Palin, speechify about the need for the state’s new papers-please immigration law. Indeed, top Arizona officials, including Governor Jan Brewer, convened an emergency “huddle” late last week, to try to figure out how to cope with the state’s $10 million in lost business resulting from the controversial law, SB 1070.
As events have unfolded in Arizona, transforming its image from boring border state to ground zero in the increasingly volatile debate over illegal immigration, I was reminded of a simple question posed by a journalist who watched another state transform under a wave of conservative populism: “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” Thomas Frank turned that question into a bestselling 2004 book about average Kansans who repeatedly voted against their own financial and political interests after ostensibly being co-opted by big moneyed political elites — in other words, Republicans.
But Selig is dodging the issue – the question is not about how many Hispanic ball players there are in Major League Baseball (a whole lot), but how much Major League Baseball will do to protect and defend the rights of those minorities who are the backbone one of America’s favorite pastime (so far… nada).
After passing what is arguably the harshest immigration law in the country—SB 1070 forces local police to adhere to detain someone if there is “responsible suspicion” that they are undocumented—Arizona has now passed a law banning ethnic studies courses, as Feministing reports.
At The Nation, Jon Wiener writes that the new law “bans classes that ‘promote resentment toward a race or class of people,’ ‘are designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group,’ or ‘advocate ethnic solidarity instead of treating pupils as individuals.'” Hypocrisy much?
Joining the chorus of celebrities, athletes, and politicians railing against the newly instated SB 1070 law in Arizona, six UN human rights experts have stated that the law is in violation of “international standards that are binding in the United States.” Read what they’re saying:
States are required to respect and ensure the human rights of all persons subject to their jurisdiction, without discrimination…Relevant international standards require that detention be used only as an exceptional measure, justified, narrowly tailored and proportional in each individual case, and that it be subject to judicial review.
Not only is Arizona’s absurd new profiling law, SB 1070, getting ready to cost the state about $90 million dollars in lost tourism and convention revenue in the next five years, it might just cost Arizona the 2011 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
“The latest example comes from the state of Arizona, whose Governor, Jan Brewer of Arizona signed a bill into law, giving local police the power to inquire about a person’s immigration status if they suspect them to be an illegal immigrant, just based on “reasonable suspicion,” and to make arrests if they are not carrying a valid driver’s license or identity papers. This law not only preempts the federal role in immigration regulation but encourages — in no uncertain terms — racial profiling.”
The countdown is on. Half a million supporters of comprehensive immigration reform rallied across the country on May 1 to protest SB 1070, Arizona’s prohibitive new anti-immigration law and ratchet up pressure for a federal reform bill this year. In Washington, DC, police arrested a dozen demonstrators, including Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), after they engaged in non-violent civil disobedience, as Esther Gentile reports for New America Media.