13 May 2010

Arizona Immigration Law The Wrong Approach

msnbc: Poll: Nearly two-thirds back AZ law

Nearly two-thirds of Americans back Arizona's new anti-illegal immigration law, which makes it a state crime for a person to be in the country illegally. The law also requires local and state law enforcement officials to question people about their immigration status if they suspect they’re in the country illegally.

Sixty-four percent favor this law, while 34 percent oppose it.

I have had my say on immigration and my previous posts still represent my views.
Personally, I am against the Arizona law, and not because I don't see illegal immigration as a huge problem. I do. The wanton lack of enforcement of out immigration laws breeds contempt for the concept of law and order, and opens the door to violent criminals, and terrorist attacks, and damages the earning potential of low-income Americans.
But the Arizona law is an infringement of and a danger to the liberty of American citizens. We have already seen a degradation of our rights resulting from the War on Drugs and the War on Terrorism. Now it seems as our rights must further yield to the War on Illegal Aliens.
Never mind that all of these so-called domestic "wars" are the result of government mismanagement and political ineptitude. If I were the paranoid type, I could believe that these crises were allowed to develop in order to facilitate the acquiescence to the depletion of our rights.
Perhaps you are inclined to think that I exaggerate. I wonder what you reaction will be the first time you are stopped, informed by a police officer that they believe you may be here illegally, and that you need to show your papers. No problem, you think, as you hand the officer your -- what? Perhaps a drivers licence?
Now, as I understand it, if the officer is not satisfied that what you produced is adequate (or maybe you left your licence in the pocket of your pants at home) you will be held in custody until immigration authorities can verify that you are here legally. And with the coming budget crunches, don't think they will be putting in the overtime on nights and weekends.
And just like that -- your liberty, citizen of this fair land -- is legally at the mercy of the whims of any police officer, and a faceless bureaucrat. That should make you uncomfortable. Do we not have the right to walk the streets unaccosted? Do we not have the right to not have to carry government-issued identification papers at all times? If liberty does not allow for this, than what does it allow?
The standard for the officer is "reasonable suspicion." If a police officer can't come up with that low standard, he's not earning his pay.
The public support for the Arizona law is due to the two entrenched parties' failure to properly manage immigration.
Historians note that the Romans would repass legislation, or pass more severe and harsher laws on the same subject. Historians conclude that the laws weren't having an effect, and weren't being enforced. So it is with us.
Why don't we try enforcing some of the laws we already have? Let's go after employers of illegal immigrants. They're probably exploiting them anyway, and dodging taxes to boot. Let's try enforcing the border. Let's check the immigration status of people who have already been arrested. Let's stop releasing immigrants on their own recognizance while they await hearings. Let's reform the mess of bureaucracies that are involved in this problem, and adopt a more rational organization. These simple things would satisfy most, and upset few.
Let's try to do those things, before we start putting you in jail for the night because you forgot to carry your papers when you left the house.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow. I am a Whig and I disagree. Your last statement sounds eerily similar to our current administration's idea of how the law works. Matter of fact, so does the meat of your statement here.

"Let's try to do those things, before we start putting you in jail for the night because you forgot to carry your papers when you left the house." - Obama's ice-cream scenario, anyone? You're painting a picture of a perfectly innocent person being stopped out of the blue and having their citizenship questioned. This is simply not based in reality. This is exactly what anti-1070 opposition is still, ignorantly, up-in-arms about.

The 1070 sword can only be unsheathed in the course of detaining, arresting or legally stopping a person committing a crime. The bill states this clearly.

41 A. A peace officer may, without a warrant, MAY arrest a person if he
42 THE OFFICER has probable cause to believe:
43 1. A felony has been committed and probable cause to believe the
44 person to be arrested has committed the felony.
S.B. 1070
- 7 -
1 2. A misdemeanor has been committed in his THE OFFICER'S presence and
2 probable cause to believe the person to be arrested has committed the
3 offense.
4 3. The person to be arrested has been involved in a traffic accident
5 and violated any criminal section of title 28, and that such violation
6 occurred prior to or immediately following such traffic accident.
7 4. A misdemeanor or a petty offense has been committed and probable
8 cause to believe the person to be arrested has committed the offense. A
9 person arrested under this paragraph is eligible for release under section
10 13-3903.
11 5. THE PERSON TO BE ARRESTED HAS COMMITTED ANY PUBLIC OFFENSE THAT
12 MAKES THE PERSON REMOVABLE FROM THE UNITED STATES.
13 B. A peace officer may stop and detain a person as is reasonably
14 necessary to investigate an actual or suspected violation of any traffic law
15 committed in the officer's presence and may serve a copy of the traffic
16 complaint for any alleged civil or criminal traffic violation. A peace
17 officer who serves a copy of the traffic complaint shall do so within a
18 reasonable time of the alleged criminal or civil traffic violation.

It is the job of law enforcement to enforce the law. Determining the identity of any suspect is key to any arrest, detention or lawful stop. Walking up to random people and demanding they 'show papers!' is a fantasy scenario concocted by paranoids, those that stand to lose a buck from illegally employing illegal aliens, anti-American supporters of porous borders and the inept few struggling with some sort of 'white-guilt' complex.

Anonymous said...

Another indicator that you've failed to do your homework before standing up and proclaiming the deficiencies of the new bill lie within this quote, "Why don't we try enforcing some of the laws we already have?". Are you referring to the understaffed and poorly utilized Federal inability to keep control of the line-in-the-sand we call a border? Or are you referring to the 13-2928 clause in the 1070 bill that, once again, clearly states,

"11 A. IT IS UNLAWFUL FOR A PERSON WHO IS IN VIOLATION OF A CRIMINAL
12 OFFENSE TO:
13 1. TRANSPORT OR MOVE OR ATTEMPT TO TRANSPORT OR MOVE AN ALIEN IN THIS
14 STATE, IN FURTHERANCE OF THE ILLEGAL PRESENCE OF THE ALIEN IN THE UNITED
15 STATES, IN A MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION IF THE PERSON KNOWS OR RECKLESSLY
16 DISREGARDS THE FACT THAT THE ALIEN HAS COME TO, HAS ENTERED OR REMAINS IN THE
17 UNITED STATES IN VIOLATION OF LAW.
18 2. CONCEAL, HARBOR OR SHIELD OR ATTEMPT TO CONCEAL, HARBOR OR SHIELD
19 AN ALIEN FROM DETECTION IN ANY PLACE IN THIS STATE, INCLUDING ANY BUILDING OR
20 ANY MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION, IF THE PERSON KNOWS OR RECKLESSLY DISREGARDS THE
21 FACT THAT THE ALIEN HAS COME TO, HAS ENTERED OR REMAINS IN THE UNITED STATES
22 IN VIOLATION OF LAW.
23 3. ENCOURAGE OR INDUCE AN ALIEN TO COME TO OR RESIDE IN THIS STATE IF
24 THE PERSON KNOWS OR RECKLESSLY DISREGARDS THE FACT THAT SUCH COMING TO,
25 ENTERING OR RESIDING IN THIS STATE IS OR WILL BE IN VIOLATION OF LAW.
26 B. A MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION THAT IS USED IN THE COMMISSION OF A
27 VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION IS SUBJECT TO MANDATORY VEHICLE IMMOBILIZATION OR
28 IMPOUNDMENT PURSUANT TO SECTION 28-3511.
29 C. THIS SECTION DOES NOT APPLY TO A CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES WORKER
30 ACTING IN THE WORKER'S OFFICIAL CAPACITY OR A PERSON WHO IS ACTING IN THE
31 CAPACITY OF A FIRST RESPONDER, AN AMBULANCE ATTENDANT OR AN EMERGENCY MEDICAL
32 TECHNICIAN AND WHO IS TRANSPORTING OR MOVING AN ALIEN IN THIS STATE PURSUANT
33 TO TITLE 36, CHAPTER 21.1.
34 D. A PERSON WHO VIOLATES THIS SECTION IS GUILTY OF A CLASS 1
35 MISDEMEANOR AND IS SUBJECT TO A FINE OF AT LEAST ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS, EXCEPT
36 THAT A VIOLATION OF THIS SECTION THAT INVOLVES TEN OR MORE ILLEGAL ALIENS IS
37 A CLASS 6 FELONY AND THE PERSON IS SUBJECT TO A FINE OF AT LEAST ONE THOUSAND
38 DOLLARS FOR EACH ALIEN WHO IS INVOLVED."?

Or is it clause 23-212? Which states,

"24 A. An employer shall not knowingly employ an unauthorized alien. If,
25 in the case when an employer uses a contract, subcontract or other
26 independent contractor agreement to obtain the labor of an alien in this
27 state, the employer knowingly contracts with an unauthorized alien or with a
28 person who employs or contracts with an unauthorized alien to perform the
29 labor, the employer violates this subsection."?

Yes, these laws have been in place. Federally. And without hiss, huff, moan or groan - now that they are enforceable on a more practical level, why all the hubbub?

The stark reality of it is, in this day and age - as a result of the issue we've been simply turning a blind eye to for all these years, it is in everyone's best interest to carry some sort of ID on them. In the case of an immigrant of LEGAL status, it's, as always, REQUIRED. This is not new. Liberties have not been infringed upon. Save for when you violate someone else's and get caught. Imagine that...

Comparing this to the failure that is/was the war on drugs, or the war on terrorism is like comparing apples to Chilean sea bass. It smacks of sensationalism and doesn't hold up to even the simplest form of scrutiny.

In ending, I'm amazed at the misinformation and inaccuracies you're propagating. As a fellow Whig, I advise you wohleheartedly to educate yourself on things that you feel so passionately indebted to oppose.