Arizona Protests Over Failure of Immigration Reform
By the time you read this article Arizona activist for immigration reform will be in full swing protesting unjust laws in the State of Arizona. They are also asking for your support for comprehensive immigration reform. Many people were relieved when a federal judge struck down and enjoined the enforcement of many of the provisions of the toughest anti-immigrant legislation in the history of the U.S., SB 1070.
Unfortunately, the Judge’s decision falls far short of a solution to the immigration dilemma. Comprehensive immigration reform (CIR), which provides for strengthening the border while giving undocumented workers a long-term path to citizenship, has been soundly refused by Republican leadership. The Arizona law was passed on partisan votes by state Republicans. U.S. Senator John McCain reversed prior promises to support reform.
In addition, portions of SB 1070 will still go into effect. These include provisions against day laborers and employers of undocumented workers. Provisions making it a crime to allow an undocumented worker to stay in your home or to transport an undocumented worker to church or even to court will go into effect at 12:00 a.m.
To no one's surprise, the cantankerous Sheriff Joe Arpaio says he will begin enforcement and raids starting at the stroke of midnight, despite the striking of portions of the law and injunctions by the Judge. Arpaio's office lost federal support of the coveted 287g program which grants local police authority to enforce federal after Arpaio reportedly abused his authority.
Some activists say they are planning to protest various locations in several Arizona cities. Wells Fargo Bank customers will have to cross picket lines at Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s office in down-town Phoenix, for example. The Maricopa County Sheriff’s office leases space from the Posh bank. A rally is planned at the jail in support of the possible multiple arrests that may occur. A demonstration is planned on the Phoenix court house steps since that is where strategic legal decisions are being made. Other strategic locations are under consideration by various individuals.Continued on the next page