I think it's annoying that most people in the news continue to refer to Arizona's SB1070 as the "controversial" anti-immigration bill. First off, how can it be controversial when it's supported by 70 percent of the population? Second, it's not anti-immigration at all. It's anti-illegal immigration.
I've never been a big fan of the Arizona law, but it's not because I think it's discriminatory toward Mexicans. I don't like it because I don't think there should be a reason for it. Deportation of illegal immigrants should be the federal government's domain.
Unfortunately, the process of becoming a legal citizen of the United States has become so arduous that many hard-working people bypass the impossible system while the feds look the other way.
While the feds are looking the other way, some really bad guys come in too. Drug mules, slave drivers, kidnappers ... shall I continue? Phoenix has the second highest kidnapping rate in the world. Only Mexico City witnesses more kidnappings than the Arizona capital.
Most of the kidnappings and other violent crimes are attributed to Mexican drug cartels.
Let me be clear: Immigration and border security are two separate issues. SB1070 in Arizona addresses the border security issue. If the police are questioning someone and they have reasonable suspicion that that person is in the country illegally, then under SB1070, the Arizona cops have the right to determine that person's residency status.
The Arizona legislature passed SB1070 to protect its residents because the federal government has refused to do its job. Maybe once we take steps to actually secure our borders, we can address the issue of badly needed, real immigration reform.
However, federal judge Susan Bolton blocked parts of the wildly popular yet somehow still controversial anti-illegal immigration bill on Wednesday.
From the Associated Press:
The overall law will still take effect Thursday, but without the provisions that angered opponents -- including sections that required officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws.
The judge also put on hold parts of the law that required immigrants to carry their papers at all times, and made it illegal for undocumented workers to solicit employment in public places.
I could get into all sorts of nitty-gritty arguments about whether or not this is politically motivated, or does it violate basic human rights, or is Arizona overstepping on states rights issues ... but I won't. Instead I'll leave you with this: SB1070 is almost identical to federal law regarding illegal immigration; it is supported by 70 percent of Arizonians; and it was legally passed by the Arizona legislature.
I think the feds had their chance to enforce their rules, and they didn't take it. Now they need to butt out and let Arizona do the job that they refused to do.