Roger Fallihee

Roger Fallihee
Location
Seattle, Washington,
Birthday
September 29
Title
Writer/Producer
Company
More Than Enough
Bio
Father, husband, project manager, screenwriter, blogger, peddler. Back to living in my native Queen Anne neighborhood. Life is good!

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MAY 21, 2010 12:43AM

Why the Arizona Immigration Law is Wrong.

Rate: 13 Flag

Sean Hannity doesn't see a problem with the new Arizona immigration law but most of his discussions surrounding the law completely miss the point as to why this legislation is wrong for Arizona and wrong for America.

Proponents of the legislation point out that immigrants are required by law to carry their green card at all times, so what's the problem?  The State of Arizona is just doing what the federal government has failed to do.

Consider these possible scenarios.

1)  A brown-skinned man, oh hell let's just call him Jose, is pulled over for speeding. The officer asks for Jose's driver's license, registration, and proof of insurance, which Jose quickly produces.  Jose's got himself one of them Mexican accents so the officer asks to see Jose's green card, which he removes from his wallet and hands to the policeman.  The officer returns the documents, cites Jose for speeding, and the episode comes to an end.

2)   A brown-skinned man, oh hell let's just call him Jose, is pulled over for speeding. The officer asks for Jose's driver's license, registration, and proof of insurance, but Jose doesn't have any of those documents.  Jose's got himself one of them Mexican accents so the officer asks to see Jose's green card.  Jose admits that he's illegally in the country so the officer takes him into custody and turns him over to the INS. 

My only problem with either of these events is that the officer assumed that because Jose has a foreign accent he's likely to be an illegal immigrant.  But I'm going to let that slide for now.

3)   A brown-skinned man, oh hell let's just call him Jose, is pulled over for speeding. The officer asks for Jose's driver's license, registration, and proof of insurance, which Jose quickly produces.  Jose's got himself one of them Mexican accents so the officer asks to see Jose's green card.  Jose explains that he's a citizen of the United States and doesn't have a green card.  The officer doesn't believe Jose and demands to see proof of citizenship.  Jose doesn't have it with him.  The officer arrests Jose for suspicion of being in the country illegally.  Once in jail, Jose calls his wife, she brings his passport, and he's released.

The Arizona law will lead to racial profiling, no ifs, ands or buts about it.  I'm a big, dumb, white, Norwegian/Irish American and no cop is going to  ask me for my green card or my passport.  I never have been asked and I never will.

If Jose is here illegally he should be dealt with in the proper manner.  But if Jose just looks and sounds like he doesn't "belong here" but is just as American as Sean Hannity, he shouldn't be forced to waive his right to walk around without "papers."

The problem with this law is how it will allow Americans to be treated, whether they're law abiding or not.

The only fair way to handle this is to ask every single person suspected of a crime, regardless of their appearance, regardless of whether they sound like they're from Tijuana or Tulsa or Tacoma, to show their papers.

I'm sure that the righties won't have a problem with that.

 

 

 

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Comments

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We have always racially profiled in America, officially and unofficially; we love to do that. Of course that law is wrong; it is ridiculous. That said, no country in the world allows foreigners to stay without papers. If we are too busy to make our own immigration laws, let's borrow some of these laws from other countries.

Excellent post, Roger, R.
You're right. Don't forget that this kind of profiling is already done right here in the U.S. (without much protest):

Profiling in AZ? Already done at immigration checkpoints!
In due time, the majority in the U.S. will be 'hispanic' (Indians reclaiming North America), and us big dumb white Irish/whatever people better have our official papers with us at all times. Karma's a-comin' down!
Arizona has decided to antagonize one-third of their population, not only with this law, but with one hostile to any ethnic-based educational program. This is a governmental train wreck - awful, but hard to look away.

Thanks for this, Roger.
Roger fantastic and rated! I can see it now, our proof of citizenship papers dangling on our coats from a safety pin, much like our mittens used to as a kid.
Rw, you won't have a problem if a traffic cop demands you to prove your citizenship?
Tell me how this does not make us a totalitarian state again? Proponents of 1070 always miss the point.
rw, I'm not talking about illegals, I'm talking about "legals." So you're saying that if Barack Obama proposed a law that all citizens must carry papers, proof of citizenship, you'd be okay with that? I don't believe you.
@rwnutjob:

As discussed in my post:

After this experience, I talked to some of my colleagues about these checkpoints and my shock at finding out they even existed. All of them, even the staunch Republicans told me that they thought these checkpoints were un-American, because Americans shouldn't be stopped to be checked for citizenship within the borders of the United States.
It's a crazy law that could incite some cops to just randomly pull people over. I was pulled over a few years back in Arizona because our van full of people looked suspicious late at night. The cop was nice about it once we realized we were a bunch of tourists with telescopes coming back from stargazing in the desert. It was weird. He explained that there were problems with drug smugglers, people smugglers and our vehicle out late made him suspicious. So I can see his point in that instance. I worry about overzealous cops pulling people over in the daytime. That could be a nightmare for the legal residents.
r
The new Arizona immigration law was bound to raise some controversy and I am pretty sure that the ones working on this project new about it. But the fact that they still continued and even passed it show that Arizona really has a lot of immigration problems that the federal government failed to solve. There have been a lot of global visas complaints coming from Arizona since the law was enforced. One way to make this law less discriminatory is to adopt the European system where everyone must always have an ID on him and can be asked to show it by any policemen, regardless if that man has committed a crime or not.