May 3, 2010

Arizona ‘show-me-your-papers’ law is about suppressing minority voters


Much of the attention over the recently passed Arizona racial profiling law has been how unconstitutional and racist it is, but what has been overlooked is that it may be another attempt by Republicans to suppress minority voting.

The law gives “local police officers authority to investigate, detain and arrest people for perceived immigration violations without the benefit of proper training, exacerbating the problem of racial profiling and raising concerns about the prolonged detention of citizens and legal residents,” according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), that plans to challenge the law in court, along with the National Immigration Law Center (NILC.The law violates the Supremacy Clause by interfering with federal immigration power and authority, and it unlawfully invites and encourages racial profiling against Latinos and other people of color.

The “show-me-your-papers” law conjures up images of old black and white movies where the Communist block KGB agent on the train dressed in a long, black trench coat asks to “see your papers, please.” I’m not sure what papers that is, but the only thing that would prove I’m a U.S. citizen would be my birth certificate or a passport. I don’t make it a habit of carrying my birth certificate, and even though I have been all around the world, but I have never had a passport. I would venture a guess that less than half of U.S. citizens have a passport.

This is about racial profiling, but it is also about voter suppression. Like Arizona, Michigan is a border state, but I can guarantee you no Canadian is going to get pulled over just because he meets a criteria for being Canadian, such as drinking Labatt Blue, wearing a hockey jersey and saying “abut” all the time. That is, of course, if the Red Wings come back to eliminate San Jose and the Montreal Canadians get by the Pittsburgh Penguins; then it’s OK.

But author and investigative journalist Greg Palast makes a case for what this law is really about: Republicans disenfranchising minority voters who may vote Democratic. Arizona has a history of minority voter suppression, as does un-elected Governor Jan Brewer, who signed the bill into law.

Palast said when Brewer was Secretary of State, she “organized a racially loaded purge of the voter rolls that would have made Katherine Harris blush. Beginning after the 2004 election, under Brewer's command, no less than 100,000 voters, overwhelmingly Hispanics, were blocked from registering to vote. In 2005, the first year of the Great Brown-Out, one in three Phoenix residents found their registration applications rejected.”

Palast said in 2008 while working for Rolling Stone with civil rights attorney Bobby Kennedy, a team flew to Arizona to investigate what looked like a purge of Hispanic voters. Voting or registering to vote if you're not a citizen is a felony, and it should be easy to find them because they list their names and addresses. Palast and his team discovered Brewer had not “busted a single one of these thousands of allegedly illegal voters,” nor had she turned over any for federal prosecution.

One of the many questions I have for this textbook definition of racial profiling is where are the teabaggers? I would think government officials violating the constitution and arbitrarily pulling people over for no reason to ask for their citizenship papers and even requiring then to carry citizenship papers at all times is a classic Big Brother, government overreach.

So, when are teabaggers going to organize a protest?

11 comments:

Not Anonymous said...

You obviously didn't read the bill. http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/49leg/2r/bills/sb1070s.pdf

On the very first page, it says that there must be lawful contact. Nobody may be "pulled over for no reason to ask for their citizenship papers"

The law does not give "local police officers the authority to investigate, detain and arrest people for perceived immigration violations". You are also wrong about the training. The training is going on now and will continue. The law won't even take effect until late July. During the 90 days following the end of the current legislative session, the law enforcement community will be in training for this law.

You're spewing the liberal media's spin on this law and not looking at the law itself.

You also fail to mention that 70% of Arizona citizens are in favor of this law and you fail to mention that 51% of the people in the country favor the law.

The Tea Party is behind this law. People don't protest things that they favor.

This is also not a voting issue. Illegal aliens cannot vote because they are not citizens of this country. In fact, the first act that the illegal aliens in this country did upon entering the United States was to break the law. Hence the term "Illegal" aliens.

This law is the same as the federal law. The only difference is that the federal government is not enforcing the law.

Once again, you're commenting on something that you haven't even read.

Communications guru said...

I have read it, anonymous, and I stand by my post. This is the very definition of racial profiling.

I’m writing the facts, and considering there so such thing as the “liberal media” there is no way I can be “spewing the liberal media's spin.”

I fail to mention “that 70% of Arizona citizens are in favor of this law “ because I don’t believe it. Even if it were true, so what? I’m sure 70 percent of the people in the south favored Jim Crow in the 1960s, but that does not make either of these racist laws right.

Of course the teabaggers are behind this law because it is a partisan, right-wing Republican organization. This crap about big government is just more false rhetoric.

It is a voting suppression move. I’m well aware of the fact that Illegal aliens cannot vote, and they haven’t. This is about intimidating minority voters who are legally allowed to vote.

Not Anonymous said...

There is more to reading the bill than just looking at the title of the bill. All you had to do was make it through the first third of the first page and you'd have seen that profiling is not permitted. I disagree with this. I believe that there is nothing wrong with profiling. You do as well. You profile based on politics. If someone is Republican, you immediately dismiss anything they say. That's profiling.

I profile on gender. When I was looking to date the profile I was looking for was someone of the female gender.

When looking for illegal aliens, you look for people that have a hard time speaking English. If all you're looking at is blonde haired blue eyed females wearing halter tops, you'll probably not find an illegal alien, although you may find a date....or a divorce if you're already married.

If you did read this bill, then once again, you should take a reading comprehension course. Because what you say about this bill is completely the opposite of what the bill says.

I will pray for you that someday you do learn to not just read, but comprehend what you read. Oh, gee. I just opened myself up for more profiling. Now I'm not just a Republican but I believe in God. That must make me a right wing religious nut. Don't ya just love profiling?

Communications guru said...

Again, I read the bill, and I stand by the post. Again, this is the very definition of racial profiling. You think driving while brown is OK? Gee, why am I not surprised. Well, no one is going to pull you over, ask for your papers and hassle you because you’re a Republican. Dismissing what you say is not profiling; it’s because you never back up anything you say, anonymous.

You just described racial profiling. It’s not illegal aliens who do not speak perfect English. Not only that, illegal aliens are not just of Hispanic origin.

Again, I read the bill, and I stand by what I wrote.

I would say stop playing dumb, but you’re not playing. If you were a victim of racial profiling you would have a different opinion. There are many, many sane and good people who believe in God, and right wing religious nuts are just a small fraction.

Not Anonymous said...

I have been racially profiled. The difference is that I don't consider myself a victim. I grew up during the 50's and 60's. I vaguely remember the whites only drinking fountains.

I have been rejected at a restaurant because of my race when I was a teen.

I didn't whine about it. I left. If I had put up an argument and actually won the argument, I would then have to worry about what was done to my food before it was served to me. When they rejected me, I pitied them. I didn't pity myself.

You might want to consider that the next time you stand up against your perceived racial profiling and stand up for Affirmative Action which is also racial profiling.

Communications guru said...

Please excuse me if I’m skeptical of some anonymous poster claming he was racially profiled. Those who have been racially profiled certainly are victims. They did nothing wrong, other than being born with a different shade of skin.

You didn’t whine about it? What the hell does that mean? By your logic, when we see a wrong we just accept it and not whine about it? I don’t think so.

Those things you mentioned are wrong, so why do we want to keep it up with racial profiling? Affirmative Action is another debate, but it is certainly not racial profiling. Among those things you mentioned happening to African-Americans you forgot to add substandard schools and discrimination. Affirmative Action levels the playing field against those who did not experience substandard schools and prejudice.

Not Anonymous said...

I'm not concerned about your skepticism. I don't believe half of what you say about yourself so your not believing me just makes us equal.

It's not a matter of whether someone did something wrong being born of a different color than someone else. Racists are in a minority in this country. You're not going to change their mind and you're certainly not going to build anyone up by making them a victim. I choose my friends and I choose not to befriend or do business with people that don't want me around due to my ethnicity. If they can't see that the color of my money when it comes to their business is the same color as their money, then their distaste of doing business with me is their loss. Not mine. Racists create their own problems. They don't create problems for me so I'm not a victim.

But if you choose to whine about something that doesn't happen to you, that's your choice. It seems to be a huge waste of time and effort to me.

The University of Michigan is a sub-standard school? Remember, they were at the center of affirmative action a few years ago with a case that went to the Supreme Court. I'm sure that everyone around the country would question your characterization of the U of M as a substandard school having to have their playing field leveled.

Communications guru said...

The difference, anonymous, is that I’m not hiding behind an anonymous name like you are, anonymous. I’m using my real name with my real picture, and every thing I say is verifiable. I’m willing to take ownership of what I write and put my name to it. In fact, some of your rightwing pals, it may have been you, have tried to use that to get me fired.

So, I’m going to ignore your tale about your alleged race. Pointing out something that is wrong and trying to correct it is not whining.

No one ever said the University of Michigan is a sub-standard school, certainly not me

Not Anonymous said...

Fired from your own blog? That would be a pretty good stunt. I wouldn't waste my time trying to get you fired.

I'm not concerned about whether you believe me or not. People that I know can't believe that I believe in freedom and the ability of people to live their own lives free from the heavy handedness of government. They don't see the liberals and now the socialist Democrats striving to hold them down by giving them tax refunds when they haven't paid any taxes. Giving them food stamps rather than having them work for what they get and rewarding them for getting pregnant out of wedlock so they can collect money from government agencies.

As for my remaining anonymous, before I ever started posting on this blog, I read through your old ones. I saw how you exposed peoples names and addresses. I saw how you chose to deny them their privacy. I've seen how you've twisted the truth to suit your needs or desires.

Your saying that's your picture doesn't make it true. It doesn't make it false, but it doesn't make it true. Your saying you never lie, when you've been caught in lies by several on here, doesn't make your lies the truth.

As for your getting fired, the only one that can get you fired is you. By your actions or your words. Quite frankly, I personally don't believe you have a job. You post here usually in the morning, but then you're posting at times in the late morning, afternoons and evenings. If you're an employee somewhere and posting during work times, I would think that would get you fired.

You claim not to have health care for your wife, but you refuse to work to get her health care.

I own my own company and come and go based on my work schedule for any given day. I have the discipline to not write things here when I'm working because I don't want my employees using their computers for non work related activities. So I set the example for them.

I also don't post things here when I can spend time with my family. My God, my family and my work are my first priorities. The rest is just play.

So if you choose not to believe what I say, that's your perogative. Just as it's mine to not believe you when I see the inconsistencies in the things you say and talk about.

As for the affirmative action, here's your words. "Affirmative Action levels the playing field against those who did not experience substandard schools and prejudice."

Your words seem to indicate you're suggesting that good schools should be brought down a couple of levels so that everyone can enjoy the substandard levels that they haven't experienced as others have. You don't improve things by knocking down the better. You improve things by making the lesser ones better. U of M fought for affirmative action at the expense of two women that had earned the chance to be educated there but lost out so that minorities could be enrolled for those positions. By your own words, you're saying that U of M is a substandard school because it must have a level playing field.

Your words are proof of your belief that U of M is a substandard school.

Communications guru said...

No, from my job.

I’m not at all surprised that people you know don’t believe that you believe in freedom. I don’t know much about so-called “socialist Democrats.” I’m more concerned about what goes on in this country. Your rant about tax refunds, food stamps and pregnancy is just one more misinformed stereotype, and, as usual, wrong. It certainly has nothing to do with discrimination and racial profiling.

Again, you post anonymously because of the bullshit lies and personal attacks you post, and you are also afraid to take ownership of the crap you write. I say I never lie because I don’t, and you will never catch me in one. I have, on occasion, made a mistake, and when it has been pointed out to me and backed up with evidence, I have admitted it and corrected it.

Ah, the personal attacks. When you don’t have the facts on your side that’s what you have to do. That’s why you post anonymously.

That is correct; Affirmative Action levels the playing field for those who experienced substandard schools and prejudice. When kids who have overcome substandard schools and discrimination apply for college entrance against kids who have not had obstacles and come from great high schools, a few extra points levels the playing field. No where and at no time did I say the University of Michigan is a substandard school. I’m not sure if you are deliberately twisting my words or you just do not understand what you are reading. But past experience says you are misrepresenting my words and lying.

Johnny C said...

Couple of things talking about basing who's legal and illegal accent is nutty. If you do that are you going to lock up people who come here that come here from non English speaking European countries??

My girlfriend's father is from Puerto Rico he barley can speak English so if he ever happens to be in Arizona you're saying it's ok for him to be harass because of the way he talks?

Another point you made since you didn't complain for being single out therefore it's ok for other innocent people to be single out for who they are? Conservative logic is amazing isn't it?

As for the affirmative action claim the majority of people who benefit from that program were white girls.. So when those yahoos voted for prop 2 thinking they're were shutting the door on young black students in reality slammed the door for white girls.

So not what job let their employees to listen to a three hour radio show during the day?