Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

The authors of Arizona's immigration law retreat

When I wrote last on Arizona's new immigration law, critics of the measure were arguing that requiring proof of citizenship based on a policeman’s “reasonable suspicion” -- which could be based partially but not “solely” on ethnicity -- triggered during “any lawful contact” was an invitation to abuse. Conservative defenders found these criticisms of a “sensibly written and rigorously focused” law not only mistaken, but “over the top,” “intemperate,” “hysterical,” “preening” and “sanctimonious.”

Until the Arizona legislature hastily revisited the law on precisely these points. “Any lawful contact” has now been changed to a “lawful stop, detention or arrest.” The word “solely” has been removed, broadening the presumption against ethnic profiling.

It must be awkward to have risen to the vigorous defense of legal language that even its authors, in the end, could not defend. But the law’s advocates are making the best of things out on their sawed-off limb. The law is now more “explicit” about its true intention. It is a “clarification.” But this isn’t a clarification; it is retreat. The authors of the Arizona law initially wrote it as broadly as they thought they could get away with. But they were caught. Their retreat does not confirm their intentions were good. It confirms that the original law was deeply flawed -- a dramatic, disturbing overreach.

A few points:

First, since the Arizona legislature and governor have retreated, that requires the recognition that the law has been improved. The prohibition against racial profiling is now explicit and, seemingly, absolute. “A law enforcement official or agency… may not consider race, color or national origin” in establishing reasonable suspicion.

Second, these changes do not address all the problems and ambiguities in the law -- and are not likely to end the controversy surrounding it. It is still not clear how the “reasonable suspicion” of a police officer is appropriately aroused, now that race officially can play no role. In fact, another change in the law allows police to initiate a citizenship search when county or municipal ordinances are violated. An email from one of the activists who helped draft and modify the law explained: “This will allow police to use violations of property codes (i.e., cars on blocks in the yard) or rental codes (too many occupants of a rental accommodation) to initiate queries as well.”

So “lawful contact” has now become a “lawful stop” -- but the definition of such a stop now includes having a car up on blocks or sleeping too many children to a room. Racial stereotyping is forbidden; but class-based stereotyping with racial connotations is apparently permitted. Opposing the Arizona law will remain a litmus test for most groups and organizations with a significant number of Hispanic constituents.

Third, the conservative debate over the Arizona law has revealed a clear divide. Conservative leaders who have been critical of the measure, such as former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-Fla.), Gov. Rick Perry (R-Tex.) and Florida Republican senate candidate Marco Rubio, have something in common: they have won, or they intend to win, statewide elections. Consequently, they are unenthusiastic about an unfocused, poorly written law that does little or nothing to improve border security while gratuitously offending a growing portion of the electorate.

The conservative writers who have uncritically supported the Arizona law share something as well: in general, they have never had to appeal to a voter, much less a Hispanic voter, in their lives. They have no direct responsibility for the political wreckage they leave behind. In fact, they tend to view indifference to political and demographic reality as a kind of purity test.

But unlike, say, a conservative magazine or blog, it is the purpose of a political party to win majorities within the broad bounds of its convictions. And each time a portion of the conservative movement demonstrates this particular form of ideological purity -- in California’s Proposition 187, the 2006 House immigration debate and now Arizona -- they create resentments toward the Republican Party among Latinos that will last for generations. In all these cases, Republicans have gained little, sacrificed much, and apparently learned nothing.

By Michael Gerson  | May 3, 2010; 11:06 AM ET
Categories:  Gerson  | Tags:  Michael Gerson  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Sarah Palin makes sense -- on offshore drilling
Next: 'Precious' little time -- or grace -- for fans

Comments

Thank you for making it clear that your support, and in fact ALL liberal support, for illegal immigration has everything to do with votes.

Posted by: mediaman1976 | May 3, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Thank you for making it clear that your support, and in fact ALL liberal support, for illegal immigration has everything to do with votes.

Posted by: mediaman1976 | May 3, 2010
+++++++
Gerson is NOT a liberal.

Posted by: Sandydayl | May 3, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Gerson, the 1070 trailer bill was not "hastily" written. The trailer bill has been in the works for weeks. Several legislators and stakeholders involved in the process were quoted on this, with a couple of Republicans (including Gov. Jan Brewer) noting that their support was based on the fact that a trailer bill would clean up some of the language in 1070.

But why let something as trivial as the truth stand in the way of bgashing Arizona and defending illegal immigration?

Posted by: pepperjade | May 3, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Mediaman, do you even know what you're talking about? Did you learn to spew that garbage from watching Fox? Get a grip. As Sandy said, Gerson is as conservative as it gets, and even he is against this law.

This process is called "having a reasonable debate" on the issues. Obviously, you are not a proponent of that method...

Posted by: dug2008 | May 3, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Pepperjade, those officials clearly were lying. Or else they were unbelievably stupid.

Posted by: jonfromcali | May 3, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

We will be changing our travel plans, as we refuse to pay for even a tank of gas in the nAZI state of AryanZone.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | May 3, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Gerson fails to point out that the law would require that all citizens who look "foreign" carry proof of citizenship at all times in order to prevent getting arrested. The law is designed to turn Arizona into a police state. The portion of the conservative movement that this law pandered to is as racist as a racist can be. The conservative movement, and the Republican party, has been taken over by the radical right-wing facist fringe.

Forget the terrorists. They are no more than flies. The real threat to democracy in the USA comes from within.

Posted by: Chagasman | May 3, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

"The conservative writers who have uncritically supported the Arizona law share something as well: in general, they have never had to appeal to a voter, much less a Hispanic voter, in their lives."
------------------
Should they be worried appealing to Hispanic voters or upholding US law? Stop making this a race issue. Abide by the law, regardless of race. Period.

Posted by: bigpapa_z | May 3, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Mediaman, do you even know what you're talking about? Did you learn to spew that garbage from watching Fox? Get a grip. As Sandy said, Gerson is as conservative as it gets, and even he is against this law.

This process is called "having a reasonable debate" on the issues. Obviously, you are not a proponent of that method...

Posted by: dug2008 |
======================
This has to be seconded..!

The Republicans for decades played the ends against the middle..

ALL to stop the Unionization of the Pickers Union in the 80's.

BUT it did not stop there..

The US facilitated the assassination of other Union Leaders in other Latin American Countries.

Especially Guatemala, Nicaragua, Salvador, Columbia, Panama and Mexico.

ISA

Posted by: Issa1 | May 3, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

The amendments were put in to shut those like Gerson up, and so to let the ACLU, La Raable and all these other subversions spend their money in Arizona for nothing.

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Arizona legislators are telling the truth. Why write a bill that is going to contain a "trailer bill" to "clean up a bill". What kind of fools are they and do they think we are?

Posted by: rlj1 | May 3, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

jeeze - somewhere in the world people are waiting to be TORTURED and the TORTURERS just need some cheering on and you're wasting you time with this stuff? C;mon Mike - we know you really want to talk about TORTURE - you love the stuff. Civil rights is so lame when it comes to TORTURE!

Posted by: hohandy1 | May 3, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama made the campaign promise that he would seal the border and reform our immigration system. Because of political reasons, mainly because he may offend a few in his political base, he has REFUSED to keep his campaign promise, like many other promises he made so the people would elect him over his moderate Republican opponent. This is lying to the people. The State of Arizona has done what they need to do to protect its citizens because the Obama Administration has refused to do so, and according to Rasmussen, 53% of the Hispanic Americans in Arizona approve of the action taken. Since the Feds have, by default, given the power back to the states, they have nothing to complain about, but we do, and we will let you know about it in November.

Posted by: DL13 | May 3, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Whether they change the law or not, the damage is done.

The fact so many people defended the law as written just shows that a lot of Republican voters lack souls.

Posted by: Gover | May 3, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

As a card-carrying Democrat, I'm THRILLED about the Arizona law. It looked like we were going to get trounced this November in the mid-term elections, but this could tip the scales in our favor (or at least minimize the losses). Republicans can't EVER get out from their own feet because they are what they are. Of course it's not about race, it's just that Republicans believe all the important issues revolve around taking government assistance away from any non-white American. For me, it's a terrific strategy. It would be much more problematic for me as a Democrat if there was another Party in America that actually cared about minority voters. Thankfully, there isn't. Not long before the Republicans go the way of the Whigs (and then I guess the Teabaggers will be the new 2nd Party in the U.S.). WAY TO GO REPUBLICANS!!!

Posted by: sachancp | May 3, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

The hot winds are carrying the desire of 40 million Mexicans that want to live the good life in the USA. This is not fiction but a result of the latest Zogby poll. Their influx will break the backs of union labor, give the Democratic Party new votes, and make the dream of MLK a reality. The walls are bursting at the seams and the flood of millions of new immigrants will soon wash America clean.

Posted by: melpol | May 3, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

The hot winds are carrying the desire of 40 million Mexicans that want to live the good life in the USA. This is not fiction but a result of the latest Zogby poll. Their influx will break the backs of union labor, give the Democratic Party new votes, and make the dream of MLK a reality. The walls are bursting at the seams and the flood of millions of new immigrants will soon wash America clean.

Posted by: melpol | May 3, 2010 12:45 PM |


...more like wash America away...

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

"Senator Obama made the campaign promise that he would seal the border..."

Did he tell you he was going to fly around the earth backwards to reverse time too? How about shoot you with his eye beams?

How exactly did you envision him doing that? Raise up the draw-bridge so the moat ~2,000 mile moat would be uncrossable? Perhaps he should have shut the 2,000 mile iron gate and put up a "No Trespassing sign?

Posted by: Gover | May 3, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

The issues surrounding law enforcement and civil rights are at odds. If you look at immigration as a law enforcement issue, you have to recognize there is a cost for hiring and training law enforcement officers, a cost for processing violators, and a cost for imprisioning or deporting illegal immigrants. Without recognizing these operational costs, and making the business case (costs vs. benefits), you have a lot of confusion, and accusations. No politicians are capable of explaining the costs of law enforcement regarding border crossings. You can't really snap your fingers, and wish for law enforcement. You can't propose, "no taxes" and turn around and say "hire more law enforcement officers to monitor illegal border crossings." Somebody has to pay for law enforcement officers just as we do for any type of criminal activity.

So those of you who want more law enforcement must lead the discussion/debate on why more taxes are required to hire more law enforcement officers who will do the hard work of actually monitoring illegal border crossings. Show me the money...There is no "free lunch" in this situation.

Posted by: rmorris391 | May 3, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

This Arizona law seems to have been designed to start racial strife, this time between Hispanics and every one else in this country.
It was a simple exercise of the rich man's game of Divide and Conquer.
Hm, so then that begs the question; why now?
Is this a distraction from the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico?
Or is it a distraction against Wall St. Reform?
The Republican politicians of Arizona, with this poorly written law, have put Latinos, particularly Mexican Americans, on the defensive.
Being a second generation Mexican American, I can tell from personal experience there are some very ignorant Caucasians in this country.
But you learn not to let the select few speak for the many.
The flood of illegal immigrants wouldn't exist if the Corporate World in America would quit hiring them.
If law enforcement officials would start enforcing the laws against these slave labor employers, locking them up, fining them or giving them some jail time, then we wouldn't have an immigration problem.
But who's protecting the Corporate World in America?
The Republican politicians.
Giving slave labor employers warnings doesn't work.
We don't need immigration reform.
What we need is to enforce the labor laws we have against slave labor employers.
Warnings didn't work against the plantation owners prior to the American Civil War. That 'civil war' was America's First Corporate War designed to end the slavery of Africans and African Americans.
Mexicans might not be in chains but there are living in conditions of squalor because of the substandard wages they are being paid. Those illegal Mexicans don't have access to medical treatment, labor boards and unions.
Maybe the Arizona Republican politicians would be happier if they could put chains and collars around the necks of those illegal Mexicans.
Too bad those Republican Arizona politicians have failed to notice that we have an African American in the White House. That means that only a select few is trying to pass on the mental disease of prejudice.
Hey Arizona voters, it's time to send your Republican politicians packing so they can live out their remaining years in the early nineteenth century, where they definitely belong.

Posted by: the1magician | May 3, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Citizens are not now required to carry any proof of citizenship with them. I don't carry one, yet I am anglo and have been in the U.S. all of my life. All I usually carry with me is a driver's license.

So what this new law does is essentially warn Hispanic citizens, even those who have been here their entire lives, to get a passport and carry it with them at all times lest they be mistaken for an illegal alien...?

Posted by: sthomas1957 | May 3, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Amazing. Finally Gerson writes a well reasoned piece that thoughtful citizens of any political persuasion can agree with...all, except of course, the wing nuts amongst the electorate who always do us the favor of identifying themselves with their foam-at-the-mouth dogma.

Posted by: wiltonsjs | May 3, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

...Perhaps he should have shut the 2,000 mile iron gate and put up a "No Trespassing sign?

Posted by: Gover | May 3, 2010 12:48 PM

...that's what's going to happen actually, but he won't be the one doing it; he'll be somewhere in the world thinking about what it's like to be a member of the one-termer club...

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

It is ridiculous seeing people argue about political parties. In everyday life you don't judge a book by its cover, but by the actions from within. I've gone to arizona plenty of times, and I can personally say that I can't stand to live in that atmosphere, but I do respect the freedoms they have, the same with nevada. Not everyone in arizona is white and racist. I'm brown and white waitresses served me at a local diner. Ppl need to quit grouping ppl for being racist when they themselves are being racist against a law enforcement of a state where nearly half are hispanic officers.

Posted by: jowildcat40 | May 3, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse


If outsiders would just stay OUT of Arizona, the indigenous White People could solve the state's problems.

Posted by: motorfriend | May 3, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Very thoughtful article. The problem is fundamental for the Republican Party. A substantial number of Republicans are either religious extremists and soft to hard racists. Republican party will be on the decline long term if they do not drastically change themselves. Short term, they may have an advantage, but not in the long term, not to mention the immorality of being racist and religious extremist.

Posted by: ak1967 | May 3, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Illegal immigration on our southern border is an organized invasion for conquest, outlined by the over-confident Roman Catholic Church in its "National Pastoral Plan for Hispanic Ministry" (Publication / Office of Publishing and Promotion Services, United States Catholic Conference, No. 199-7)ISBN-10: 1555861997

In 36 pages, in both Spanish and English, the Roman Catholic Church puts forth its stratagem for usurping Our Constitution and the Whig, Jeffersonian, American Revolution, expressly through its promotion of illegal immigration, legal aid, naturalization, and voter registration.

Those who assist Rome, called "the real Anti-Christ" by America's Founder, Author, and anointed Prophet, Thomas Jefferson, are committing treason against the Constitution, the People, and against "the King of America" "which reigns in Heaven above," G-d Almighty.

It is no coincidence that the same institution and families funded Hitler from its American collection plates, through Vatican banker Rockefeller and money conduit, Knight of Malta, Prescott Bush, to the author of "I Paid Hitler," papal baron and Knight of Malta, Fritz "the Rockefeller of Germany" Thyssen.

"A Moral Reckoning," by Daniel Jonah Goldhagen, the author of "Hitler's Willing Executioners," proves beyond any doubt that two popes and the Roman Catholic Church are morally, legally, and ethically culpable of the Holocaust.

Illegal immigration is just "more of the same" to destroy the American Middle Class while relieving "pressure" in their slave plantation and brothel of Latin America.

It is no wonder only the Roman Catholics of the SCOTUS violated their Oaths to appoint Hitler's banker's dry drunk, draft-dodging closet-queen grandson to the White House to commit 9/11.

Seal the border.
Expropriate fascist plutocracy.
Hang Bush and Cheney.
Death for Treason
"Annuit Coeptis"
One People, One Creed, One G-d: America

Posted by: iamerican | May 3, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

More open boarder proponents, sheesh.

This country truly is un-governable.

Posted by: impeachemall | May 3, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Blah blah blah racism. I don't have a real argument blah blah blah racism.

Don't you moonbats have ANY other talking points? The "if you don't agree with me you're racist" is a nasty, underhanded attack making race relations in this country worse.

I suppose though race relations to liberals don't matter nearly as much as getting their way and votes.

Posted by: Cryos | May 3, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Very well written article! Thank you!

Posted by: gdesignr1 | May 3, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Arizona is in this problem and has been driven to this law partly because it caved-in after a disastrous joint effort with the INS and local law enforcement in Chandler, Arizona in the 1990s.
Immigration Enforcement was discouraged to the extreme and politicized after some of the officers botched the enforcement effort by harrassing lawful Hisapnic residents. Talk about throwing the baby out with the bath water! Times have changed, except that journalists still don't know what their talking about, most or all of the new law is on the books already in some form or another and has been a rountine portion of standard law enforcement practices for decades, but largely ignored. Before Washington critizies Arizona they ought to look at the mess in their own backyard. Just outside the beltway is a sancuary zone with almost zero meaningful respect for our laws. Immigration enforcement is about a group of foreign nationals from all over the world subverting our law, not racism. The Arizona desert is full of individuals who are seeking more pay, and could care less about voting, serving in the military, property rights, or becoming citizens. I would imagine that many bristle at the statements declaring our life the "better" life. How many would stay where they came from is they made the same money? An awful lot, a concept the media feels won't spin a profitable tale for sale.

Posted by: eGREGie | May 3, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

"[re: a big metal gate] that's what's going to happen actually, but he won't be the one doing it.."

Yeah where illegals going to find wire cutters or a ladder in Mexico am I right?

That's an absolutely brilliant solution, because the one thing that stops people dead cold is chain-link or 10-foot gates.

Posted by: Gover | May 3, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

So if I'm reading this correctly, Conservatives are to sellout their beliefs in order to win future elections. Wow. That really does say something about the modern day liberal. They are willing to give up the US to foreigners just so they can stay in power. The modern day appeasers. Keep feeding the Alligators in the hopes they won't eat you once everyone else is gone. We need more immigration but it must come from Europe. We don't need anymore bus boys, grass mowers or McDonalds employers. They do not stimulate the economy. Mass immigration is having a devestating effect on the US. Where is Al Gore and the Green Nuts on that issue. How will the US sustain itself by mid century with a projected population of over 450 million? Can someone answer that question without using the word bigot or racist? Liberals Suck!

Posted by: Cobra2 | May 3, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Win a majority inside its convictions? That would require the Republican Party to have convictions. The Republican Party is a mob. All a mob knows is anger and that is all the Republicans are showing. Does anyone honestly believe Barry Goldwater would have supported a "Papers Please" law? I never agreed much with Goldwater, but I could admire him. And I feel he would have been first in line to denounce the law - long before it was passed.

Posted by: caribis | May 3, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Chagasman, the real terrorists in this country are the liberals like you that expect the goverment to support you instead of working like a real american man.

Posted by: redskins2k1 | May 3, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

So long as the issue remains a highly political one e.g. tied to votes from a large voting bloc that neither party wants to offend, there will be no meaningful immigration bill coming from Washington. Those bold enough to push for it will be vilified by those whose votes would suffer from it ergo the comment in this article about Rubio, Bush, etc. Unfortunately, until the rampant crime in Mexico reaches the border states and begins to impact those who cry fowl from the safety of their gated communities, nothing will come of any effort at sealing the borders. I try to take a pragmatic look at the big picture. The borders need to be sealed and protected from intrusion from anyone, regardless of race, who doesn't legally belong here. As to the 12 million or so illegals who are already here -- they aren't going anywhere and we don't have the political will to force the issue. Why not therefore give them a path to citizenship, fine them for their breach of the law, but allow them to contribute into the country's coffers rather than potentially remaining a public burden.

Posted by: sassafrasnewport | May 3, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

aren't you the moron that said "It makes it harder for illegal immigrants to live without scrutiny" ?


and your rag won pulitzers!

i say stop suckling at the left teat and/or that other engorged appendage

Posted by: perryrants | May 3, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Mediaman1976's unintentionally honest definition of "liberal" is instructive.

Since mediaman considers himself to be a "conservative" and Gerson has expressed an opinion that mediaman disagreess with, Gerson must be cast as the opposite of a conservative. It doesn't matter that Michael Gerson probably considers himself conservative, not that he was President George Bush's speech writer for six years and was also a senior Bush policy advisor.

The lesson that can be drawn from this is that we are not a country divided into a liberal and a conservative camp. What divides us is intolerance.

Posted by: exco | May 3, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

" Finally Gerson writes a well reasoned piece that thoughtful citizens of any political persuasion can agree with"

Sorry - Gerson is torture-defending poison. He does not deserve the platform that he has been given.

Posted by: hohandy1 | May 3, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

PepperJade, umm...if this bill wasn't hastily written as you suggest, but has to be reversed rather quickly because most observers, lawyers, etc realize it's unconstitutional, I'd hate to see what a bill that was methodically put together would look like. The bill is a train wreck and won't make it. And I'm an Independent and can see that.

Cryos, you sound like a whiny white boy who got spanked because you spilled your milk on your small penis. Grow up! Gerson didn't force you read the article. Nor did he force you to comment. Geez!

Impeachmall, umm..it's "border"; not "boarder".

ak1967, great point. Here's some proof to what you are saying. The Republican has been shrinking for decades and they are going to lose the minority vote forever.
http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/mood_of_america/mood_of_america_archive/partisan_trends2/summary_of_party_affiliation


To all conservatives, you have no one to blame but yourselves for telling your crony congressional representatives in the House and Senate to not take the stimulus money. For you see, Obama put $400 million in the stimulus package for border security!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here is the article from April 1, 2009...not 2010.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30001880/

the1magician, you pose a great question as to why this immigration issue has just suddenly cropped up: CNN.com is reporting on its website today that notorious Sheriff Joe Arpaio (sp?) is pondering a run for governship...against sitting governor of this ill-fated bill: (R) Jan Brewer! She needs a strong force among white voters to preclude a loss to Arpaio.

Gerson is dead-on in his article, which incidentally is echoed on a politico.com article today too. Republicans don't seem to get it and are in complete denial. YOUR PARTY IS SHRINKING!! The polls say it. Your actions prove it. You want a complete pure all-white male party. You can have it! cuz it's gonna happen. And you'll take the losses of one election after another to get it too. Don't get me wrong, I'm 100% for immigration reform. But I'm for reform that's legal and makes sense. The retreat, which Gerson spoke of, is damning and speaks to exactly what the GOP is all about -- which was never fooling anyone. White men need to grow up, realize that you will be the minority sooner rather then later and deal with it...without guns and violence...like you typically do when do you whine and don't get your way (see Times Square bomber and Timothy McVeigh).

Posted by: gr8bigguy | May 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

The author's last comment about Repubithugs
learning anything-it is so obvioulsy clear-you can't TEACH anything to a rock.

Posted by: patriotgmalou | May 3, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

I find it funny to see Governor Perry listed as a conservative. Lil Rick talks a good game, but he blows whichever way the money blows. He has tried to sell the state highways to foreigners and he has always bowed to the boys who need their slave-labor from Mexico.

Maybe that is how you define "conservative" these days.

Posted by: rusty3 | May 3, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Arizona has provided clarity on the points that were criticized as ambiguous.

This is an amazing State government.

Imagine, someone listening to criticism and saying: these people have a point and then changing the law to accomodate the criticism.

When was the last time your Government did that?

There is something right with Arizona that we don't see elsewhere in Government.

Posted by: jfv123 | May 3, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Arizona has provided clarity on the points that were criticized as ambiguous.

This is an amazing State government.

Imagine, someone listening to criticism and saying: these people have a point and then changing the law to accomodate the criticism.

When was the last time your Government did that?

There is something right with Arizona that we don't see elsewhere in Government.

Posted by: jfv123 | May 3, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse


WHERE'S THE REAL BORDER FENCE TO DEFEND AMERICA?

Homeland Security Czar Janet Napolitano lied to the American people about the border fence. It was never built to original specifications. She said the actual fence stretched 745 miles? It doesn't? large regions are still old barbed wire fencing. Other areas are restricted by vehicle barriers. In some cases none functioning cameras and movement sensors is the only enforcement. The Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations bill specifically eliminated the main funding mandate of the Secure Fence Act of 2006 as a two layer fence. Learn the facts about these lies at AMERICAN PATROL. Washington has already appropriated over a trillion dollars to fight two isolated foreign wars and also assisting in building Israels wall. If Amnesty is passed the costs will dwarf the two wars we are now fighting. But the taxpayers of our nation get the budget cuts for our national security fence, and get--NOTHING, to protect us from the deadly insurgency of drug smugglers and millions of illegal aliens. No wonder Arizona had to enact a strict immigration police limitation. on law

The Tea Party and thousands of anti-illegal immigrant organizations, will fight to stop any type or form of AMNESTY. Any kind of Amnesty will just bring in millions more people, waiting their turn for the next path to citizenship. Those here can bring in millions of close family members, which we as taxpayers will end up supporting. If Amnesty passes we will be obligated to give more government entitlements. Before President Obama signs the final document, the border will be swarmed by hundreds of thousands who will arrive by plane or ship. Finally the legal immigrants who have waited for years, will be upstaged by the illegal criminals here. It should be up to the people by popular vote or by referendum, because giving 20 to 30 million foreigners a rapid path to citizenship is an unjustifiable outrage. It will be a major catastrophe on the Federal, state, county and city public welfare benefits inflicted on our nation. We cannot afford it and it will divide the country, as other states like Arizona have been forced to enact their own immigration laws. The government we voted for refuses to protect the border or the majority for the American people, because of NAFTA and its diplomacy with the corrupt government next door. There should be no restraints on funding any of these measures when it comes to the American people's protection, for jobs, taxes, infrastructure, ecosystem, population growth and more. To learn more go to NumbersUSA website

Posted by: infinity555 | May 3, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

"Senator Obama made the campaign promise that he would seal the border and reform our immigration system. Because of political reasons, mainly because he may offend a few in his political base, he has REFUSED to keep his campaign promise ..."

Give me the reference.

It is impossible to "seal" the border and no intelligent or honest person would make such a foolish promise.

Obama has kept up and expanded enforcement actions both at the borders and at workplaces, even as it offends some who voted for him.

DL13, you are either ignorant (i.e., you rely on the right wing media) or dishonest.

Posted by: j2hess | May 3, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Last week you quoted someone as saying: "I can tell you that I think that there are people in Arizona that assume they know what an illegal immigrant looks like. I don't know if they know that for a fact or not." I tried to comment on this line, but couldn't due to technical problems. I bet the frothmouthed bigots were bringing down the server. This is the whole crux of the issue: NO ONE knows what an illegal immigrant looks like. Without asking to see a green card (or a SS card or passport), all the vigilantes have to go on is the color of their skin.

The SPLC legal team has already handled cases of people who were assaulted because others saw brown skin and assumed "illegal immigrant." In one case featured in their quarterly magazine, the man they assaulted wasn't even an immigrant; he was a U.S. citizen like them.

Posted by: bucinka8 | May 3, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Yeah where illegals going to find wire cutters or a ladder in Mexico am I right?

That's an absolutely brilliant solution, because the one thing that stops people dead cold is chain-link or 10-foot gates.

Posted by: Gover | May 3, 2010 1:16 PM |


...like the one Duncan Hunter put up...

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Personally I don't have a problem with racial profiling. Why should a person have to commit a crime before we can arrest them and deport for being here illegally?
You aren't stopping them from driving, buying insurance, receiving healthcare, using services or the like. They have fake social security numbers and no one does a thing about it. Meanwhile the Dems would like to grant them amnesty for a vote so we can be outvoted in our own country.
Nope - it is time to get serious about who is a Citizen. I also don't think being born here to an illegal alien should constitute Citizenship for the baby - that promotes birth tourism.
We don't want our lifeboat sunk, and believe in borders, language, culture and economy being protected.
No apologies.

Posted by: brwing | May 3, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

As an American citizen I can questioned and pulled in jail if I am acting goofy and do not have or not have an ID. Why should illegals have more rights than legal Americans?


Posted by: billisnice | May 3, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Human nature to profile. Women profile men and men profule woman. We live our life with a conceptioal profile of the world around us.

Posted by: billisnice | May 3, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Chagasman, I didn't mean to leave you out:
"The portion of the conservative movement that this law pandered to is as racist as a racist can be."

Your point is excellent and well articulated. Moreover, I find it fascinating that white conservatives don't get this, yet, they attack Democrats for "pandering to Blacks" when in reality, Blacks vote democrat because the Republican Party IS racist..as you point out. When I see a woman at a Tea Party rally carrying a monkey around on her arm in effigy of Obama, there's nothing about that that makes me want to join the Republican Party. Worse, Republicans don't denounce that woman. Blacks want nothing to do with Birthers. Blacks want nothing to do with people who disparage Obama. Blacks want nothing to do with Palin. Blacks want nothing to do with Reagan, Bush, Bush II, Cheney, or Rove. Blacks want nothing to do with the Confederacy. It's a resounding rebuke of the the entire Republican Party, yet they claim, the Democrats pander to Blacks.

Posted by: gr8bigguy | May 3, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Chagasman, I didn't mean to leave you out:
"The portion of the conservative movement that this law pandered to is as racist as a racist can be."

Your point is excellent and well articulated. Moreover, I find it fascinating that white conservatives don't get this, yet, they attack Democrats for "pandering to Blacks" when in reality, Blacks vote democrat because the Republican Party IS racist..as you point out. When I see a woman at a Tea Party rally carrying a monkey around on her arm in effigy of Obama, there's nothing about that that makes me want to join the Republican Party. Worse, Republicans don't denounce that woman. Blacks want nothing to do with Birthers. Blacks want nothing to do with people who disparage Obama. Blacks want nothing to do with Palin. Blacks want nothing to do with Reagan, Bush, Bush II, Cheney, or Rove. Blacks want nothing to do with the Confederacy. It's a resounding rebuke of the the entire Republican Party, yet they claim, the Democrats pander to Blacks.

Posted by: gr8bigguy | May 3, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

And for all you luders out there with this they aren't going anywhere claptrap, just watch wait and see. They're outta here; their illegitamte children in tow, and it's only just a matter of them providing their own transportation or not. And these fools who are "fighting" so hard for these in the papers; well, they may as well prepare themselves for the real thing.

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

People: in 2008 there were 4 million children born to illegal immigrants. In 2009 that number went up to almost 5 million - that means there are 40 million illegal immigrants here already.

Now the problem and the solution are complex - passing state laws may force people to move to less desirable areas but illegal immigrants are here for the most part to escape the hell that Northern Mexico has descended into.

Some are criminals granted and some are here just to better themselves but most have come here because their areas have become unlivable.

Posted by: agapn9 | May 3, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Oh gee, if they were to pass such a law in California, you could catch all your illegals running out town.

There'd be millions.

Posted by: lindalovejones | May 3, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Why is it that we never see a columnist appealing and imploring illegal immigrants to just go home? We only see columns criticizing the people who want them to go home. I know that the answer to this question is that it is because the illegals would just give a collective FU to the writer of the column and stay in the U.S. anyway. That being said my advice to supporters of the Arizona law who have read this column would be to do exactly as the illegals would do in the sitution in which a columnist is asking them to go home voluntarily. Give Mr. Gerson a collective "you know what".

Posted by: fastaire | May 3, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

"""Citizens are not now required to carry any proof of citizenship with them. I don't carry one, yet I am anglo and have been in the U.S. all of my life. All I usually carry with me is a driver's license."""

And if you bother to read the law you would see that as long as the drivers license is valid and from Arizona or a state that requires proof of legal status before issuing, it would be all that is required.

"""So what this new law does is essentially warn Hispanic citizens, even those who have been here their entire lives, to get a passport and carry it with them at all times lest they be mistaken for an illegal alien...?

Posted by: sthomas1957 | May 3, 2010 12:53 PM"""

If they are citizens or LEGAL immigrants, they can show legal status by showing:
A valid Arizona Drivers License
A Valid Arizona non-operators Identification Card
Tribal Registration
Any valid identification issued by any federal, state or local entity that checks proof of legal status before issuing. So would a US Passport work, of course, so would a drivers license or ID card from all but about 4 states. Someone with a foreign passport that had a legal and valid entry stamp would also work and of course a "green card" or other legal immigrant paperwork issued by the US Government. By the way legal immigrants are required by federal law to carry either a green card or other paperwork issued by the US Government showing legal status.

Posted by: rchayes | May 3, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

While it's hard to figure what Arizonans fear more: crime or brown people. If it's crime, too bad they've trashed their budget with their racist law. They could have hired hundreds of cops for the money all the lawsuits and boycotts will cost them.

If it's brown people, well too bad. Those scumbag Arizona racists capable of reading should google demographics in the US. Whites will be a minority in the lifetime of the younger of them -- their only salvation is to take it all and move to North Dakota.

Boycott Arizona

Posted by: Casey1 | May 3, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Gerson, the 1070 trailer bill was not "hastily" written. The trailer bill has been in the works for weeks. Several legislators and stakeholders involved in the process were quoted on this, with a couple of Republicans (including Gov. Jan Brewer) noting that their support was based on the fact that a trailer bill would clean up some of the language in 1070.

But why let something as trivial as the truth stand in the way of bgashing Arizona and defending illegal immigration?

Posted by: pepperjade | May 3, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

___________________

so basically Brewer and her ILK KNEW THE BILL was poorly written but they RUSHED it through anyway?? And the Rethugs continue to blame DEMS for doing the same thing.

All this re-wording does is "PUT A MORE POLISHED LIPSTICK ON A PIG?

Posted by: racerdoc | May 3, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

find it funny to see Governor Perry listed as a conservative. Lil Rick talks a good game, but he blows whichever way the money blows.
----------
You are so right, Rusty. Isn't he the guy who signed a bill REQUIRING all preteen girls in Texas to be vaccinated against HPV? Isn't that the very definition of government interference in parenting? And it's no coincidence that one of his staffers used to be a lobbyist for the company that produces and sells the vaccine. Great, government interference with a side order of conflict of interest.

But I digress. I haven't heard much about what the people of New Mexico think about all this. Because if Arizona "seals" its borders, Mexican citizens trying to get out will just find another exit door. They want out just that bad.

Posted by: bucinka8 | May 3, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Brewer for President in 2012. I'm sick and tired of the ball less wonder crowd being in charge. It'd time for a change.

Posted by: jackp1 | May 3, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

There is a simple point that Mr. Gerson does not want his readers to know. For the most part the Arizona law mirrors Federal law. The major difference is that state of Arizona may well enforce immigration law whereas the Federal government does not. In addition, if one looks as federal case law, they can look at a case De Canas v Rica (1976) where the Supreme Court in a majority decision written by Justice Brennan - yes that Brennan - approved of locales concurrently enforcing Federal immigration laws. Therefore, it is far from a slam dunk that the Arizona law will be found unconstitutional.
The simple truth is that the Arizona issue comes down to two
basic question: If you believe that this country has the right to determine who comes in and deport those who come in illegally, you will support the Arizona law? If you believe that this nation does not have the right to determine who enters it and does not have the right to expel anyone who enters it, you will oppose the Arizona law?
Before you answer either of these questions, I ask you to consider the following realities that rarely if ever make it into the mainstream press. Each and every year somewhere around 1,100,000 Mexicans enter the Mexican workforce and there are jobs for somewhere around 500,000. Where do the hundreds of thousands of Mexicans who cannot get jobs go? The answer is north. Recently, the Pew Hispanic organization conducted a pole among Hispanics as to their approval of enforcing immigration laws. In every category a majority of Hispanics believed that enforcing immigration laws was wrong. By the way, this also included indicting employers of illegal immigrants.
In these circumstances, let us have some honesty. Do we want the fact that Mexico cannot produce enough jobs for its people to govern our immigration policy? Before you answer this question, I want to remind everyone that however bad things are in Mexico they are worse in many parts of Africa and Asia. Second, do we want a minority in this country to determine our immigration policy at the expense of the rest of this country. If we do allow this to happen, are we seeing the Balkanization of America?
I do not know what the right course of action on immigration should be, but I want an honest and open discussion. For anyone interested in this subject I urge them to read the report issued by the Hesburgh commission thirty years ago and the Jordan commission issued fifteen years ago. Here one will see what these distinguished Americans though would be a sound immigration policy. It should be the start of a rational discussion of immigration.

Posted by: jeffreed | May 3, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I live in Texas (Houston) and am surprised to hear that Perry is against the AZ law. Really?? Perry has seemed to arch ever more conservative as he wins term after term here but I'm surprised he didn't support this red meat for Lone Star conservatives. The only justification I could see for him supporting it is the added cost for local law enforcement to be in the border patrol business. I thought that was CBP's job anyway.

Posted by: wpreader2007 | May 3, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

To White militia, Sara Palin, and the Right wingers, any critiques of any law they want is a mentally disturbed, "Libral" act. They want the LAW --- in the Constitution --- to be merely "interpreted" as it was first written around George Washington's time, saying BACK THEN it was better. Everyone and everyone was better back during those early years, the "argument" goes. And, as lunatics like Saraph Palin and Michelle Bachmann screamed: Cons or the "real Americans" need to "take back" America and return it to its glorious state, as it was during those early years.... during which George Washington had no compunction riding out on his horse to break up tax protestors in public park, when protestors blah, blah about governemnt "illegally taxing" spirit drinks and other alcoholic beverages...

Posted by: HerLao | May 3, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

DL13

Senator Obama made the campaign promise that he would seal the border and reform our immigration system. Because of political reasons, mainly because he may offend a few in his political base, he has REFUSED to keep his campaign promise, like many other promises he made so the people would elect him over his moderate Republican opponent. This is lying to the people. The State of Arizona has done what they need to do to protect its citizens because the Obama Administration has refused to do so, and according to Rasmussen, 53% of the Hispanic Americans in Arizona approve of the action taken. Since the Feds have, by default, given the power back to the states, they have nothing to complain about, but we do, and we will let you know about it in November.

Posted by: DL13 | May 3, 2010 12:36 PM


Once again the Teabaggers and far right are spewing lies about Obama's campaign promises. See below for a more accurate assessment. Let's smack these LIARS down again in Nov.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/promises/browse/?page=14

See No. 286

Posted by: tboner2007 | May 3, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

FYI teabaggers:

The Arizona law is similar to the federal law except for one very important difference. Resident aliens must carry a green card, true, but they only have to show it to an INS (BICS) agent, not the local police.

It may not seem like a big difference to you, but INS agents don't check your tailights.

Posted by: joebanks | May 3, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

great law, seeing that all it does is enforce federal illegal immigration laws on the books forever. enforcing the laws on the books in this area is LONG overdue.

thats why the law is supported by 65% of arizonans and 50% of democrats in the state.

michael gerson is scared of the 'racist' smear, and i dont blame him. i would expect a little more courage, however.

Posted by: dummypants | May 3, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

This outrage is not truly about the new AZ law or civil rights. Until this law was passed, there was no real fear of enforcement by the illegals. Are we supposed to rewrite laws to say that everyone must obey U.S. law except illegal immigrants?

It is about AZ's attempt to control and protect their borders and the federal government's unwillingness to enforce a law that is already in place. Again, eople entering this country illegally know that it is illegal but didn't fear enforcement.

The state has taken a stand after repeated requests for federal assistance.
People are dying (legal residents and illegals), drug cartels are pushing their territories into the US and human traffickers are extorting life savings from illegals.

This is not a Republican, Democratic or Independent issue. Anyone using it as such probably could care less about anything other than counting votes for their party.
I also feel that any public official (congressman, policeman,etc.) who refuses to enforce the law or calls for residents to rise up against the law, should be removed from office or voted out.

Posted by: bethg1841 | May 3, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

We will be changing our travel plans, as we refuse to pay for even a tank of gas in the nAZI state of AryanZone.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 |
--------------

Well, 46% of the "Nazis" voted for a black man in the last presidential election. But of course your travel plans are your own concern....

Posted by: rohitcuny | May 3, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, let's further embolden the illegal foreign invaders by striking down this necessary law. Idiots.

Posted by: TooManyPeople | May 3, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, let's further embolden the illegal foreign invaders by striking down this necessary law. Idiots.

Posted by: TooManyPeople | May 3, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

The words that this author decries as indefensible in the recently passed Arizona Bill 1070, "reasonable suspicion" actually appear in the United States Federal Code of Regulations 174 times. This includes Part 8, Title 287, Section 8 which states "If the immigration officer has a reasonable suspicion, based on specific articulable facts, that the person being questioned is, or is attempting to be, engaged in an offense against the United States or is an alien illegally in the United States, the immigration officer may briefly detain the person for questioning."

The insistence that the meaning of the words "reasonable suspicion" is easily twisted to mean something it does not flies in the face of ALL Federal Law.

Posted by: Norski | May 3, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

For your consideration, I give you the Republican Party:

George "The future will be better tomorrow" Bush

Dick "what's the big deal about a little splash of water in the face" Cheney

John "I was never a maverick even when I was a maverick" McCain

John "Health care Armageddon" Boehner

Mitt "I loved my health care bill before I hated it" Romney

Eric "Oy, how did I get mixed up with these Republican schmucks" Cantor

Jan "Halt! You vill show papers, now!" Brewer

Sarah "I don't want to serve the people who voted for me, I want to be rich. I quit!" Palin

Ken "Ban women's breasts" Cuccinelli

Tea Party "Keep government out of my healthcare. Has anybody seen my Medicare card?"

Michele "Investigate anti-Americans in Congress" Bachmann

Mitch "Save Wall Street, dump Main Street" McConnell

Awesome!

Posted by: apspa1 | May 3, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

A complete failure to regulate the borders probably hurts the poorer mostly urban democrat constituency the most. Jobs will be harder to come by, drugs will be plentiful, and the collapse of the entitlement system will be hastened.

Posted by: peterg73 | May 3, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

As a Hispanic who lives in Arizona, I can tell you the average Arizonan can tell who is an illegal. We hire them, we deal with them at all levels, we see them at the local stores, we see them in their communities and we like them. Two things have changed. First is crime. I don't care who uses drugs, they are coming through our state and all the crime that comes with it. We want it is stop. Most illegals are good people just like the rest of us but the crime has to stop.

Second, as our economy has suffered our state spending must be cut. The biggest problem that we face is money being spent for the illegals, meaning non tax payers, It is the quickest and easiest way to go. But in the end we cannot have 47% of the people paying for everyone. We are living on a time bomb an no one wants to see it.

Posted by: tk1123 | May 3, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

This allows law enforcement to do their primary job of keeping the peace. Rousting illegals off street corners shaping up is a waste of resources while chasing the drug dealer shooting up an area has another tool for prosecutors for extra state crime. Better verification of automatic guns ownership will also get the gun runners operating in the state. Ranchers need these weapons, drug dealers don't. This much needed clarification adds probable cause making it pass constitutional muster.

Posted by: jameschirico | May 3, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

The reality is that contempt for the indigenous communities and later Mexicans and other Latinos has existed since the original "wetbacks," the Europeans, arrived on this continent. The illegal immigration debate we see today, as in the case of Arizona's illegally adopted "law" that has nothing to do with immigration but more about "racial profiling", is nothing but a smoke screen for anti-Mexican/Latino haters using the guise of immigration to justify resentment toward other groups that do not look, think, or act like the dominant culture. So, please, don't insult yourself and others by using illegal immigration as a lame excuse to further your hate-filled agenda. The indigenous heritage enjoyed by Mexicans and other Latinos on this land, including what is now the U.S., goes back tens of thousands of years. Attempts were unsuccessful by the invading European colonists to get rid of the "savages" who somehow became foreigners in their own land. I guess history is repeating itself by what we are witnessing today. Que les vaya como sombrero, con a cabeza a dentro.

Posted by: Calexico | May 3, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

This law doesn't make sense. Already if anyone is stopped/detained for any suspected/actual illegal activity, they have to present some ID or law enforcement will take you in until they check you out. That's standard across America.

This law originally was about racial profiling (no law breaking necessary---just look illegal), but now seems to just re-state the existing laws, unless it is also intended to harass Hispanics.

Law enforcement already had authority to detain illegal immigrants, if there was reasonable cause to detain them or believe they were illegal. So if its not based on racism as some say, how can you explain this law as an improvement on legal authorities that law enforcement already has?

Posted by: KevinAF | May 3, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse


Whatever it takes to win the Latino vote, eh Mike?

So do you pay social security on your nanny?

Posted by: WylieD | May 3, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

"The conservative writers who have uncritically supported the Arizona law share something as well: in general, they have never had to appeal to a voter, much less a Hispanic voter, in their lives. They have no direct responsibility for the political wreckage they leave behind."

Conservatives should ignore the Hispanic vote. The best they can hope for is apathy, so Hispanics don't go to the polls and vote for a Democrat. The United States had skillfully avoided mass migration from Latin America for the first 200 years, but it has become a left wing political project to inundate our communities with unskilled Spanish speaking people who refuse or are unable to assimilate. The majority of Americans never wanted them. Ultimately, they will depress our standard of living, cause crowding, crime and poverty, and turn America into a stagnant banana republic which just grows food to export to China.

Posted by: greg3 | May 3, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

I had originally opposed this law for those very reasons. If enforcement is contigent only upon the enforcing officer's "suspiscion" then it would only be a matter of time before an AMERICAN CITIZEN would have been detained simply for being unable to prove his or her citizenship quickly enough. The amendments address my objections and I can now support this law (though I still think we'd be better off concentrating on the employers).

I'm happy to see that the State of Arizona was willing to make a few common sense changes that drastically reduced the scope for abuse and civil rights violations inherent in the original language. If everyone in government would make such reasonible compromises, maybe we'd get more done.

Posted by: andrew23boyle | May 3, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Gerson,

In case you didn't know this, the AZ State Legislature has passed a bill banning all Ethnic Studies in the state:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/04/30/arizona-legislature-passes-banning-ethnic-studies-programs/

No classes teaching the history of Mexico, Native American languages, etc., etc.

Our State Superintendent for Public Education, Tom Horne, is running for Attorney General and is touting his support of the new legislation (as yet not signed by the governor)

http://www.azcentral.com/news/election/azelections/articles/2010/05/01/20100501arizona-bill-bans-ethnic-studies.html

And his department is now calling for the removal of teachers with accents or perceived poor grammar from teaching children with poor English:

http://www.truthdig.com/eartotheground/item/arizona_sacks_accented_teachers_20100430/

The amount of racism running rampant in our state if frightening.

Posted by: homer4 | May 3, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Newsflash to the uninformed, Gerson wrote speeches for Bush, he is hardly a liberal. He dislikes this law because his friends in high places like cheap labor. Stay tuned for his piece on how employers of illegal immigrants should all be arrested. LOL.

Posted by: SarahBB | May 3, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Arizona should have zero tolerance in its:

Zoning laws
Vagrancy laws
Loitering laws
Civil disturbance laws
Littering laws

People wanting to give birth show your papers.

Parents enrolling children in schools show your papers.

People renting homes show your papers.

People buying cars show your papers.

People wanting drivers license show your papers.

People at emergency rooms show your papers.

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Obviously the "Good ole USA" is in decline because minorities are overbreeding and moving into the majority.

The biggest transfer of capital from one people to another in history is now occurring. Trillions are moving from White America to Colored America.

In a few decades, when coloreds can outvote Whites, there will never be another White President.

And I wonder if coloreds will be as nice to us as we have been to them-I seriously doubt that...

As far as I can see, the only solution is for White people to understand what is going on and organize into a separate political and national force.

And I hope that organization is really f%$#ing militant!

Posted by: am3550 | May 3, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

The author of this bill, Russell Pearce, routinely refers to Hispanics as wetbacks. No sane or honest person can deny that this is a racist bill.

Posted by: cthulhu1 | May 3, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Citizens are not now required to carry any proof of citizenship with them. I don't carry one, yet I am anglo and have been in the U.S. all of my life. All I usually carry with me is a driver's license.

Posted by: sthomas1957 | May 3, 2010 12:53 PM
=============================================
In most states one must present a birth certificate in order to successfully obtain a driver's license.

Thus a driver's license is a surrogate proof of citizenship.

That's why illegal aliens so covet a driver's license; just get one of those and most officials will beleive one is legal.

Furthermore, any person who fails to carry a government issued identification such as a driver's license, passport, etc. is subject to detention until identity is established.

The sheer ignorance of the average citizen is almost beyond belief.

Posted by: krankyman | May 3, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Obviously the "Good ole USA" is in decline because minorities are overbreeding and moving into the majority.

The biggest transfer of capital from one people to another in history is now occurring. Trillions are moving from White America to Colored America.

In a few decades, when coloreds can outvote Whites, there will never be another White President.

And I wonder if coloreds will be as nice to us as we have been to them-I seriously doubt that...

As far as I can see, the only solution is for White people to understand what is going on and organize into a separate political and national force.

And I hope that organization is really f%$#ing militant!


Posted by: am3550 | May 3, 2010 3:55 PM


...all that is required in the meantime is for Democrats and Republicrats to removed from office as soon as possible. Just vote anti-Democrat and anti-Republicrat.

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

I hope Arizona doesn't chicken out about its right to repel this foreign invasion. Most Americans approve of its fight for freedom.

The opposition to Arizona's law is racially motivated and racist in fact. Many think that people with darker skin should be exempt from American law. They say that darker skinned people should not obey the laws made by people of pallor.

They are outlaws and anarchists. This should not be tolerated because America cannot remain great without its law and resulting order.

Our laws should be obeyed. Illegal immigrants must be stopped from creating chaos and disorder.

Posted by: battleground51 | May 3, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

And I wonder if coloreds will be as nice to us as we have been to them-I seriously doubt that...

Posted by: am3550 | May 3, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse
================================
There are so many things wrong with your post, I don't even know where to start. But to answer your question, will "coloreds be as nice to us as we have been to them". I seriously doubt that too.

After all, it was so nice of white people to treat the coloreds as slaves; to murder, rape, and mutilate. Then after slavery was over, it was so nice of whites to treat coloreds as second class citizen, to deny coloreds the right to vote, to lynch and terrorize them. Now, when you feel that Hispanics are a threat, you want to treat them to the same niceties of the Jim Crow laws like the blacks received.

So, I hope that when coloreds are the majority that they don't treat white people as nice as whites have treated others. No one deserves that treatment.

As to your threat about militants, don't think that we coloreds will be so easy to push over this time. We also know how to organize and although we don't walk around brandishing our weapons in public parks, we have guns too.

Posted by: wmwilliams14 | May 3, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Wow. The neo-con Looney Tunes are out in full force in this comments section.

You really haven't noticed the flow of money is going UP towards the elites? Ever hear of Wall Street?

BTW, when illegals were mainly Canadian, Irish, Polish, people from the former communist countries, no one seemed to care.

Ah, but Mexicans. That's different.

Posted by: tony_in_Durham_NC | May 3, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

...As to your threat about militants, don't think that we coloreds will be so easy to push over this time. We also know how to organize and although we don't walk around brandishing our weapons in public parks, we have guns too.

Posted by: wmwilliams14 | May 3, 2010 4:32 PM

...you're going to need them...

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

hared, I doubt it. Tea party people like you are just a bunch of talk anyway. That's why you like the message boards. You can be as racist as you like without anyone knowing who you are. People like you are just cowards anyway, scared of black people, brown people, Muslims, anyone that doesn't look like you.

Frankly, I shouldn't have stooped to the level of am3550. But he had me so mad with his post, I couldn't help it.

Posted by: wmwilliams14 | May 3, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

hared, I doubt it. Tea party people like you are just a bunch of talk anyway. That's why you like the message boards. You can be as racist as you like without anyone knowing who you are. People like you are just cowards anyway, scared of black people, brown people, Muslims, anyone that doesn't look like you.

Frankly, I shouldn't have stooped to the level of am3550. But he had me so mad with his post, I couldn't help it.

Posted by: wmwilliams14 | May 3, 2010 5:04 PM

...whatever you say...

Posted by: hared | May 3, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

The authors of the law made changes to make it stand up to constutional challanges. That should make you sleep better at night.

Many states are working on similar bills.
Perhaps you haven't noticed the majority of the people in this country are for securing the borders and are tired of the Feds not enforcing the law.

It's really the chamber of commerce that wants amnisty.

The rule of law needs to prevail. No torture and no amnisty for illegal aleiens only deportation. Deportation should happen regardless of race creed or color.

Posted by: joejoe2000 | May 3, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

...BTW, when illegals were mainly Canadian, Irish, Polish, people from the former communist countries, no one seemed to care.

Ah, but Mexicans. That's different.

Posted by: tony_in_Durham_NC
************************

Ah, but every wave of immigration in the country has indeed been met with suspicion, hatred and violence. For no good reason other than the newcomers were perceived by those next lowest on the social rungs as a threat.

May I remind my dear fellow conservative Americans, The solution is to move UP the ladder, not to worry about stomping on the hands of those on the rung below you. Conservatives love to preach this as an ideal, but know that when an election is at hand, nothing gets the base more riled up and to the polls than a bogeyman.

Hypocrites.

Posted by: abqcleve | May 3, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I disagree with Gerson's point to a great degree. And I am aghast at the too quick reaction from many Hispanics in this issue including many Hispanic media outlets.

The TRUTH is that the situation in many border states and specifically Arizona has worsened and taken a recent downhill turn to the point that many in this state are in fear continuously for their lives.

This President and his administration are totally unresponsive to any Hispanics in this country and Obama played with Hispanics during his campaign. My question is WHEN ARE HISPANICS GOING TO WAKE UP TO THIS REALITY?

The question of illegal inmigrants needs to be resolved, but in a manner that makes sense to all and WE MUST FIRST SECURE OUR BORDERS!!! Everyone needs to realize that we must all obey the laws of this country and if we aspire to come to this country, we must do it legally and not the way many in the south want to do it. There is no argument that is valid about some of these states being formerly Mexico. My question to any Mexican is what kind of treatment would any american get if found in similar circumstances in that country? Mexicans need to learn that a path to any rights in this country needs to be made doing it the right way and forcing themselves into this country is not the way.

We all need to also realize that this beautiful country of ours has its limits and we cannot open our borders to all.

So, when is this country going to enforce the law and shape up immigration so that we demand everyone who comes here to have proper identification.

So,

- Close the borders and have federal personnel monitoring both south and north borders.

-Issue a national ID card for all

-Change all policies of employers and demand that it gets followed with penalties for violations. When this gets changed we will see a drastic change in people being drawn to come to this country.

-Deal with the 10-20 million of illegals and insure that they pay penalties and subject themselves to OUR LAWS. And what is it about learning how to speak English? For all that want to become part of this country!

I am a proud Hispanic who has raised a beautiful family in this country through our hard effort and it is embarrassing when other Hispanics try to throw away those values that we worked so hard for.

So, don't be fooled because Obama and Napolitano are DOING NOTHING for Hispanics. And further, Janet Napolitano needs to be comfronted for her incompetence in Homeland Security!

Posted by: Hispana | May 3, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I note that the Post and CNN are not reporting that pro-immigration folk have been attacking, beating, and robbing anyone in a counter demonstration. These are thugs , the same folk that murdered an Arizona rancher, shot a Boarder Patrol Agent to death, commit half of the homicides in this country. It is enlightening to see them defended by the Post's "liberals". The American Taliban - the Washington Post.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | May 3, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

...BTW, when illegals were mainly Canadian, Irish, Polish, people from the former communist countries, no one seemed to care.

Ah, but Mexicans. That's different.

Posted by: tony_in_Durham_NC
************************

Ah, but every wave of immigration in the country has indeed been met with suspicion, hatred and violence. For no good reason other than the newcomers were perceived by those next lowest on the social rungs as a threat.

May I remind my dear fellow conservative Americans, The solution is to move UP the ladder, not to worry about stomping on the hands of those on the rung below you. Conservatives love to preach this as an ideal, but know that when an election is at hand, nothing gets the base more riled up and to the polls than a bogeyman.

Hypocrites.

--------------------------
I'm very liberal on many things and to answer your question.

The difference is the waves of immigrants before came here legally through Ellis Island.

I'm fine with any legal immigrant.
I'm not fine with any illegal aliens.
Deport them all.

Posted by: joejoe2000 | May 3, 2010 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Now I hope that many other states replicate this move and pass similar laws.

It is time that we take a stand on this issue!

How about beginning with ENFORCING THE LAWS and SECURING OUR BORDERS IN THE SOUTH and NORTH?

Posted by: Hispana | May 3, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

I am new to this format and I admit to not having read Gersons one(?) or two(?) diatribes against the Arizona Law but I will still make two general observations-to the extent that Gerson rails against the law he is missing a b asic significant point- hte law is at heart a desparate effort by one of our border states to get our federal government's attention to a complete and dishonest failure by all of Washington DC- the President the Congress and the Pundits- primarily the left wing pundits to care about their responsibility to prevent illegal immigration- flaws real or perceived take a far second place to Arizona's plea for attention-

the profiling diatribe- also fraudulent and dishonest a minimum of 10.8 million as in MILLION illegal immigrants are in our country and they come from Mexico not from Canada and most of them appear to be-what they actually are which is latino- and they appear to be conversant with the Spanish language-no surprise there so why the furor over profiling what a falseness of an argument-

if you are looking for real dishonesty t then read Doris Meissner's creative mythology- which she terms "5 mhths about immigration and which is laced with distortions and commingling of facts about legal immigration to somehow give credence to sanctifying illegal immigration

Posted by: 27anon72 | May 3, 2010 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Arizona is setting the pace for true, (illegal), immigration reform. Arizona finally made it illegal to be illegal.

Only in America is such a thing absolutely necessary, unfortunately.

Way to go Arizona!

Posted by: battleground51 | May 3, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Today, Mexico's undeclared war on America moves with quickening speed & increasing Violence. They realize American is weak and without the will or desire by our Corrupt/Lawless Politicians to protect this Nation and its Citizens!

Mexico,s modern day General Calderon is not content with just retaking the Southwest. He invades all American states by the largest Invasion of any Nation, at any time in History, by any means, anywhere in the world!

This invasion is encouraged, abetted and organized by the Mexican state and supported by all citizens in Mexican society. Calderon provides his 'troops' with maps, water, provisions and aid to invade America's border & subvert its Laws & Constitution!

Our President & U.S. Congress aids, abets and encourages this invasion by failing to defend our borders, by providing 100.s of billions in benefits to the invaders & by Promising them Amnesty & American Citizenship as a reward for their Invasion & for committing numerous felonies against American Citizens!

Any other Nation in the world would consider an Invasion aided, abetted, organize and promoted by a foreign POWER to be an Act of War!

Are our Politicians are too Political Correct, Weak, Corrupt and Spineless to protect American Citizens! Or Maybe????????????/

Most of the Politicians & Law Enforcement in Mexico are bought off by the Drug Cartel one must wonder, if some, if not most of the racial defenders of this Invasion in the Press & by our Politicians are not like their Mexican counter parts!

This refuse by our Politicians, Pass & Present, to abide by our Constitution against Invasion, enforce our Laws & Honor their Oath of Office by defending American Citizens & this Nation from Invasion is Treason. Pure & Simple!

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Obama & the Democrats have an plan to be the controlling Majority party and a lock on power & turn this Nation into a Third World welfare state, a socialist paradise.

Unlike Bush Jr. the Stupid, Who did he knew not what, Obama is a smart man with a diabolic plan, he has already said next on the agenda is Immigration reform, which means Amnesty & Citizenship for the 20 to 30 millions invading Criminals & Uneducated Prolific breeding Third World rejects as a reward for invading this Nation and committing numerous felonies, alone with citizenship for all their Mother,s, Dad,s, Sisters and Brothers, Uncles etc. etc. in a never ending chain.

This will add 10,s of millions of educating hating, American hating, gang joining Hispanics, breeding at a prodigious rate & producing more dependent Welfare Democrats & assuring enough Democrat Welfare voters to control this Country & to turn us into a Third World Nation!

Our future will be a one party Socialist Dictatorship & in a few years a Spanish speaking Third World cesspool of Corruption, Crime,Poverty & Misery modeled on Mexico & nothing short of a civil war will be able to break the yoke and servitude of citizens to Obama & the Democrats!

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

The Mexican Drug Cartel is in all 50 American States, Illegal gangs in American cities coast to Coast and the Drug revenues are estimated to be 141 Billion per year. Maybe the question American citizens should be asking is how much the billions from the Drug Cartel will buy.

Answer:
White House, Justice Dept, Most Democrat Politicians, thousands of propagandist in the press, 50 % of the Republicans, etc etc in other words a Nation!

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Wake up people to the political playing of Obama and his supporters. Using the RACE CART is his game and they must feel that the only way to caption Hispanics is this way.

The Arizona law is a cry for law and order to the total ineptitude of this administration and President Obama.

Hispanics, wake up and realize that the only way to survive in this country and get some respect is to follow the laws in this country.

And to Mexico and mexicans trying to force their way in, you are totally wrong and your actions are hurting any decent Hispanic in this country who follows the laws. This will backfire and spread like wildfire because we have reached a point of NO MORE TOLERANCE FOR THIS!

We need to oust this President and his supporters out of office as soon as we can !

Posted by: Hispana | May 3, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

As a LEGAL Latina, whose Mexican parents came here LEGALLY, I am so sick of people saying that Arizona is wrong here. I think the state of Arizona should be commended for passing this legislation...maybe the federal government will get off its *** and do something about it now.
I work in Social Services and see the misuse of the system every day. Many times someone asks, "Are these services available to undocumented individuals?" and the answer is almost always, "no, but there is a loop hole." This is outrageous!
Support Arizona, reduce the strain on our services, and improve the safety of U.S. citizens. Makes sense to me.

Posted by: deserttrat | May 3, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Vell.. 100 comments and six people like it. Thank you for the constructive criticism.. AZ altered the law and it is much better now.

But.. this is an essay on the matter of why AZ wrote and passed the law.

Attorney that helped draft SB 1070 Arizona’s tough new law rebuts the major criticisms
http://illegalaliennewsupdate.com/archives/8231
• April 29, 2010

Posted by: joelwisch | May 3, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

The Arizona legislature was relatively unconcerned about the influx of illegal aliens into the state during the housing boom that artificially propped up the state's economy for a decade. The illegals only became a problem after their services were no longer needed by the construction industry. Funny how that works, isn't it?

It will be interesting to see how the legislature's response impacts other Arizona industries that depend on illegal labor (tourism comes to mind).

Posted by: exco | May 3, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

American1 - I'm right there with you. This has been coming for 25 years - look at Casa de Maryland - a tax-supported HELP group (aiding and abetting) for illegals boasting 25 years of help...since the last amnesty in 1985.

Many of these believe in the Aztlan Movement - see here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajkAP_M4ZAM

We can't secure our borders: see 40,000 illegals cross over a 5-week period at one point in AZ: http://www.borderinvasionpics.com/Invasion.html

Look around you - no matter where you live...there are large communities of illegals all around you. Take a drive.

Unless we place exorbitant fines on employers and help enforce this kind of constraint...there will be no self-deportation.

Posted by: joesmithdefend | May 3, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Arizona is an equal-opportunity offender - they are offensive to everyone who believes in constitutional rights and limited government.

I love the remarks by the acculturated chicanos and cholos who are in favor of the Arizona law. They are ashamed by their own people. You know, the ones who want to slam the door shut once they have made it across themselves. These self-denigrating people are ashamed of their own heritage.

Posted by: alance | May 3, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

We also need to stop providing them with services that should only be for legal residents.

Posted by: deserttrat | May 3, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

I am a native Arizonan unlike most that post btw Canadians are the 4th largest group of illegal immigrants in the USA (this is a current statistic) For several years DOJ has had Arizona under investigation for racial profiling; I am not in favor of illegal anything including immigration. Pearce co-authored this bill with several (3rd rate) law professors, lawyers, who have serious right wingnutz affiliations. Boycotts of Arizona due to this legislation will reap the same results as the boycotts against Afrizona due to Ev Meacham and the MLK controversy. This bill will be repealed and Brewer will be impeached (if she's lucky)
http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2010/04/30/kris-kobach-email/

Posted by: neec13 | May 3, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

What is appalling to me is all of the people on this list who assume that illegal immigrants are all on welfare or criminals. That sure sounds like racism to me. The biggest problem most illegal immigrants have is that they are exploited by employers who pay them horribly, treat them horribly and often don't pay them at all. We need comprehensive reform, not a police state. If the powers that be really don't want so many people coming in illegally, why don't they enforce the laws against employers? The answer is that they don't - what they really want is cheap labor.

Posted by: minnesotamama | May 3, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

minnesotamama, they want cheap labor and they need a new scapegoat for budget shortfalls and other issues. It's the GOP policy, when everything else fails, roll out a new law against illegals, abortion or gay rights. It gets the base all riled up for the mid terms without actually doing anything. It's all the party of No has.

Posted by: wmwilliams14 | May 3, 2010 7:26 PM | Report abuse

The answer to turning our economy around and avoiding a bad recession or maybe an depression is obvious.

1. Make e-verity mandatory & start enforcing our Immigration Laws and Border security.

Advantages:

1. Unemployment takes an Huge drop down when millions of Illegal Aliens go home!
Wages goes up when the slave labor subsidizes by tax payers is no longer available!
2.
3. Tax receipts goes up by billions as the Huge underground economy goes above ground.
4. Welfare cost goes down by billions that is currently spend provide Medical, Education and welfare for the invading horde!
5. Hospitals & ER. return to profitably income goes up, costs goes down, care improves as workload decreases.
6.Business and profits expand & grow adding jobs and increasing wages as 40 billion dollars currently going out of country is spent on goods and services in this country!
7. Crime and the cost of Crime takes a Huge drop down.
8. Balance of payments improve as the cost to support 20 to 30 million illegal aliens goes away. I.E oil, electric. water,infrastructure, etc.
9. Pollination, congestion, environment makes Huge improvement.
10. Insurance rates drop across the board as tax payers no longer have to subsidize 10,s of millions illegal aliens. Medical, car insurance etc.
11. Document fraud, identify thief, etc. makes Huge decrease.
12. Over crowding of prisons and cost decrease by Huge amounts as the Illegal Aliens prisons population decrease!
13. Drug usage and the destroying of life that is ravaging our cities plus the millions of crimes and billions of dollars in cost will decrease as tighter borders will reduce the estimated 140 billion worth of drugs pouring across our open borders.
14. The pain and suffering of the estimated 48,000 thousands lives taken by Illegal Aliens since 9/11 and the 100,s of thousands of rapes, robbery etc. will go away.
15. Our schools will make Huge improvement in education or children & cost decrease as millions of none English speaking students that is costing billions and the education of our children goes away and class size takes a huge drop.

This is just a few of the benefits anyone can think of many more. There is almost no down side. Although many will say costs will increase because of wage increases once the slave labor leaves business. But most of the wage savings were not passed on to consumers but was just increased profits for the businesses. Any profits decreases for businesses will more than be off sit by the simulating impact of more than 40 billions dollars on our economy and gains in productively will increase as higher skilled workers replace uneducated peons and businesses find labor saving devices, technology, machines etc. to replace labor shortages the same as happened when Slavery was stopped!.

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

But it was such a brilliant electoral strategy;

elect republicans and they will steal your health care and ask you to pay for it with chickens, and, by the way, we will stop people who are not white and make them produce their papers just like in the Soviet Union.

Damn! They were making all those points for the democratic team :-)

Posted by: orange3 | May 3, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

If the terrorist do attack Wash. DC as threaten by a terrorist leader in Pakistan, it is far better that our Corrupt Politicians pay the price than Innocent American Citizens.

The Politicians of both parties have for years governed like they were the rulers and American Citizens were their serfs! Their priorities have been Self first, Lobbyist next, Party next, with unbelievable corruption threw in for good measure, and far down the line somewhere is the welfare of American citizens and the future of this Nation.

Most of the Politicians have aided, abide & encouraged the largest invasion of any Nation, at any time, by any means in the history of the world, while ignoring Article IV Section IV of our Constitution against invasion, the rule of Law, and their Oath of office!

An invasion that is costing more American lives every year than terrorist have killed in the last 20 years of both Military and Citizens combined!

An invasion that is destroying our schools, medical, social welfare net, Culture and costing tax payers 100,s of billions to provide Welfare, Schooling, Medical, Prison cells Etc. for the millions of invading criminals and uneducated peons.

We have allowed the largest transfer of poverty in the world to take place from the American hating Nations on our borders to be transferred to this Nations tax payers, where the invading horde continues the same corruption, practices and breeding that created the poverty and misery in their home countries, that they are now fleeing!

The future of this Nation is an over populated Third World Cesspool modeled on Mexico! Then it will not be necessary to outsource jobs or bring in more Slave labor for jobs that cannot be outsourced, because citizens will be forced to work long hours for starvation wages and we can compete with China, India, Mexico & other Third World Nations.

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Don't let the media steal this issue - go to STREETREBUTTAL dot com and let your opinion be heard.

Posted by: Brokerm | May 3, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

i don't think the looney repugs revised this "law" because of a sudden case of humanity, but because of all the attention and the demonstrations from all across the country.they thought they could just slip it thru.
this is a hate-filled and racist piece of legislation that is aimed solely at hispancics.
will the law enforcers from arizona stop and look at the shoes or "papers" of fair, blond, blue eyed illegal aliens? no, didn't think so.

Posted by: ninnafaye | May 3, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't sound like Gerson is making a MORAL case against the Arizona law -- in fact he praises its good intentions. He's making a tactical, POLITICAL case. Translation: the Republican Party needs Hispanics to stay at home on election day; after that, we can set about deporting them.

Let's not forget that Gerson was part of an administration that worked hard to suppress minority voter turnout in 2004, 2006 and 2008.

Posted by: tboyer33 | May 3, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

This jerk and Karl Rove are two good reasons why the Republicans are out of power. They divided the party in 2006 and 2007 with amnesty and now they are actively giving Republicans bad advice.

Gerson - no one is listening to you.

Posted by: wj03412000 | May 3, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

If the Mexicans want to be exploited - let them come - issue say, half-a-million visas to Mexicans every year with a biometric ID. No business person wants to pay more for laborers than he/she has to.

What happens? Mexicans don't have to cross the Sonora Desert risking their lives. They just go to Guadalajara to our consulate for a background check and a health exam - then maybe they can pay for a visa that has a time limit if they qualify.

Just consider the demographics. We need all the anchor babies we can get. Who else is going to pay for your Social Security? Blue eyed people aren't making enough babies to keep you out of poverty when you are 66 and need to survive.

Posted by: alance | May 3, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

If Arizona government wants to deal with immigration law, then, they should deport all illegal immigrants and take over the procedures and costs of that as well. Anild, there is about 4 million people from other countries waiting to enter USA "LEGALY" and go thru procedures, Arizona is more than welcome to take on that responsibilty/ But NOOOOOOO, they only like to kick out people out of country, people of certain race. PURELY RACIST BECAUSE THEY NEVER EVEN TALKED ABOUT LEGAL IMMIGRANTS BUT THEY YAPP ABOUT SOME IMMIGATION LAW.

Posted by: BOBSTERII | May 3, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

"What is appalling to me is all of the people on this list who assume that illegal immigrants are all on welfare or criminals. "

Well, there is a way to put this to a test. Why won't somebody? Select at random 100 illegal aliens standing outside various Home Depots and monitor them for 30 days. When they can't pick up work, what do you suppose they do for cash? They have to eat and pay for lodging, and they can't apply for food stamps or section 8 housing vouchers. What do they do?

Well, I know what they do. They commit petty crimes, breaking into peoples homes during the day when everybody is at work, or they mug people at knife point walking home from mass transit -- which gives them an easy way to stalk victims and get away later. How do I know? I live in a community with a Home Depot and a light rail stop, and 100% of the crime is committed by non-resident blacks (the usual suspects) and Hispanic illegals. And in case you didn't know, 50% of ALL immigrants are on some form of welfare. And all illegals with kids avail themselves of the public schools to babysit. This is in fact the big ticket item costing AZ taxpayers as much as law enforcement. So keep your appalling outrage to yourself.

Posted by: greg3 | May 3, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

The attraction of the illegal immigrants to employers is not only for their low wages but also for the quality of their work. Most small manufacturers cannot afford to pay more then the minimum wage. The locals that are willing to work are usually lazy or slow minded. The illegal immigrant is a savior, he accepts only 10 dollars an hour but is worth 30. The employer is limited to a cash only payroll, but his profits are large enough to give Uncle Sam his cut. The shortage in employable workers must be ended. Opening up the border would not only bring in a large workforce of quality workers, but also create more tax payers.

Posted by: melpol | May 3, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

If the police in Arizona are going to enforce the law with an even hand, they'll have to lock up the McCain family as suspected illegal immigrants.

After all, Gramps has a PANAMANIAM birth certificate, and daughter Bridget was born in Bangladesh!

Posted by: HughBriss | May 3, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

"The attraction of the illegal immigrants to employers is not only for their low wages but also for the quality of their work. Most small manufacturers cannot afford to pay more then the minimum wage. The locals that are willing to work are usually lazy or slow minded. The illegal immigrant is a savior, he accepts only 10 dollars an hour but is worth 30. The employer is limited to a cash only payroll, but his profits are large enough to give Uncle Sam his cut. The shortage in employable workers must be ended. Opening up the border would not only bring in a large workforce of quality workers, but also create more tax payers. "

This is a steaming pile of puppy poo. A recent Princeton study found that the average IQ of children of Mexican illegals is 83. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree so I doubt the parents are much brighter than their offspring so what sort of high quality work are you thinking about? Well, I think I know: Go into a Subway to see how money is made off illegal aliens. You can hire six of them to get the work of two and still make a profit. "What kind of bread?" says one who takes the bread and slices it. "Cheese?" Says the next one. "What kind of veggies?" says the third. "Pepper and salt?" says the fourth. Fifth operates the cash register. Sixth cleans the tables or unpacks and dumps the ingredients into trays behind the sneeze guard. This assembly line produces a $5 sandwich every 20 seconds so that's $900 dollars an hour. Is this the high quality work you are referring to that lazy locals don't want to do? Over time you will learn that they all have 2 or more young kids in school, at a cost of $8000 per kid. Now these amigos ain't paying tax, I don't care what you say, but each one gets on average about $26,000 per household in taxpayer services. So that's a $170K subsidy from citizens so Mr.Subramani can turn his fast food franchise into a cash cow.

Posted by: greg3 | May 3, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

The Mexican Drug Cartel is in all 50 American States, Illegal gangs in American cities coast to Coast and the Drug revenues are estimated to be 141 Billion per year. Maybe the question American citizens should be asking is how much the billions from the Drug Cartel will buy.

Answer:
White House, Justice Dept, Most Democrat Politicians, thousands of propagandist in the press, 50 % of the Republicans, etc etc in other words a Nation!

Posted by: american1 | May 3, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

"So that's a $170K subsidy from citizens so Mr.Subramani can turn his fast food franchise into a cash cow."

By the way Mr Subramani probably got a special low interest loan from the Small Business Administration to buy that Subway franchise because, even though Indians have the highest household earnings of any other ethnic group in the US, they still get privileges as an underrepresented minority.

Feeling screwed, yet?

Posted by: greg3 | May 3, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

"Feeling screwed, yet?"

And Mr Subramani has probably figured out how to keep a big fraction of his all cash business off the books. Taxes? You don't expect him to pay for educating illegal immigrant kids, do you? They don't belong to his Hindu caste, after all.

Posted by: greg3 | May 3, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

According to the Washington Times, the legislation, signed April 23 by Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, is similar to Reglamento de la Ley General de Poblacion — the General Law on Population enacted in Mexico in April 2000, which mandates that federal, local and municipal police cooperate with federal immigration authorities in that country in the arrests of illegal immigrants.

Under the Mexican law, illegal immigration is a felony, punishable by up to two years in prison. Immigrants who are deported and attempt to re-enter can be imprisoned for 10 years. Visa violators can be sentenced to six-year terms. Mexicans who help illegal immigrants are considered criminals.

The law also says Mexico can deport foreigners who are deemed detrimental to "economic or national interests," violate Mexican law, are not "physically or mentally healthy" or lack the "necessary funds for their sustenance" and for their dependents.
Full story http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/may/03/mexicos-illegals-laws-tougher-than-arizonas/

What a bunch of hypocrites!

Posted by: deserttrat | May 3, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Oh yes, NOW I remember...

ALL THE 9/11 TERRORISTS WERE ILLEGAL ALIENS. So as long as we are IGNORING all the existing laws about enforcement, lets REPEAL them too.

Then; anyone from anywhere can waltz into the USA ...unabated.

Posted by: connollywest | May 3, 2010 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Wake up people to the political playing of Obama and his supporters. Using the RACE CART is his game and they must feel that the only way to caption Hispanics is this way.

The Arizona law is a cry for law and order to the total ineptitude of this administration and President Obama.

Hispanics, wake up and realize that the only way to survive in this country and get some respect is to follow the laws in this country.

And to Mexico and mexicans trying to force their way in, you are totally wrong and your actions are hurting any decent Hispanic in this country who follows the laws. This will backfire and spread like wildfire because we have reached a point of NO MORE TOLERANCE FOR THIS!

We need to oust this President and his supporters out of office as soon as we
can !

Posted by: Hispana | May 3, 2010 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Someone must do the job the Federal Government refuses to do.I say we Impeach all the Federal Government that refuses to enforce or Federal Immigration Laws.RICO STATUTE Investigation.

Posted by: Imarkex | May 3, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

Why dont you go and live in Southern Arizona a while Mr Gerson... move away from your cushy abode in Washington DC - where you are devoid of reality.Read about how Mexico treats their illegals...Michelle Malkin wrote an excellent article...even you can google for it.. Alos read the letter from the State senator from Snowflake, Arizona..Read about the drug lords, the killings, where the border guards are actually stationed..in short..open your ignorant mind and your blind eye to what is really going on there....America can be destroyed from within and you and many other media ignoramuses are allowing it to happen.

Posted by: JUNGLEJIM123 | May 4, 2010 6:51 AM | Report abuse

When you recruit people to come from Mexico to work. When you send a bus to bring them from Laredo, Texas to your plant. When you make sure that nobody checks their id.

What do you think you are doing?

You have a system.

It exploits Mexicans and other people from south of the Border. It lets them in and does not eject them. But they have no rights. The corporations can rob them. They have no health benefits. They may or may not get the education they need. That we need them to have.

This is exploitation.

This is wrong.

For pity's sake.

STOP IT.

Posted by: GaryEMasters | May 4, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Man, I HATE all these "right-wing" idiots who CAPITALIZE stuff randomly and attach "scare quotes" whenever they feel like it (often).

Posted by: jwgealt | May 4, 2010 8:14 AM | Report abuse

You missed the real story- Legislators that actual read the bill they passed and modified it to be more understandable.

Extra.. Extra... "Government reads bill"

Now if they would only do it prior to voting.

Posted by: flyover22 | May 4, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

What's really interesting is that the Reich Wingers who claim this isn't a racial profiling law are flat-out ignoring that the principle writers of the law are open white supremacists who are bragging about getting their latino-hate fantasies backed up by the government.

For people who claim to live in fear of a police state, these Reich Wingers sure are proud of having created one.

Posted by: edta | May 4, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Gerson -

Thanks for showing that conservatives can demonstrate principles such as a belief in "small government" in a consistent manner across the board. I applaud your pieces on this issue. It gives me faith that people will ultimately recognize the AZ law for what it is, WRONG and UNAMERICAN.

Posted by: PWChomeowner | May 4, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Gerson is streching the truth. And in some cases just bull s'ing. The United States Government requires non-citizens to carry identification on them at all times. Identification being a pass-port, green card, visa,etc.... That requirement has been on the books for years. Of course illegals won't have such documentation unless they are phony documents. That is one reason why the Mexican government has been asking/demanding the US federal and state governments recognize their Mexican ID card as a legal document that the bearer is in our country legally. Isn't that something? Believe it or not--some states are doing just that and even issuing driver licenses using that Mexican ID card as the basis--or sometimes just giving the illegals the driver license with any phony ID card. You don't think their illegal cheap labor doesn't play a part in this whole issue--your dreaming. Companies that hire these illegals need to be fined some big-bucks. States/cities that won't enforce our laws against illegal entry need to be identified and those officials kicked out of office. Arizona is now doing the right thing. Texas (now called "North Mexico") needs to start as does New Mexico and Calif. Perry in Texas is using our state as a sanctuary for illegals and Houston, Dallas, to name a couple are "sanctuary cities". Is it any wonder that our country is in trouble because of our phony politicians on both sides of the aisle-not wanting to enforce our laws against these illegals!!! Go Arizona!!!

Posted by: RWall1 | May 4, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Most commentors here totally ignore the fact that this is a hard core Republican columnist advocating on behalf of illegal immigrants.

So this is hardly the place to write a rant against Democrats, to put it mildly.

Though I find it even more stupefying that some would praise him for being consistent with conservative principles to do so, unless your version of "small government" is "not enough government to even protect our borders."

I find it far more plausible to believe that Mr. Gerson is not expressing a principled conviction, but simply using Jesuitical arguments to support the amoral desire to win by pandering to Americans of Latino ancestry--at least to those who consider that ancestry more important than their citizenship.

In doing so his position is consistent with the Republican Party's elected representatives' actions.

Remember that during the Republican Reign of 2000-2006 in which the GOP (Greed Over Principles) controlled all three branches of government, not only did they do nothing substantive to control illegal immigration--America experienced the largest number of illegals entering the country per hour of any time its history, throughout the time the GOP was apparently more interested in looting the Treasury (while paying for everything with IOUs to Communist China).

Most Republican rank and file oppose illegal immigration and support Arizona's efforts to somehow cope with the federal government's dereliction of duty.

What most Republican party members don't seem to realize is that about half of Democratic party members agree. They just have no voice in their party's elected representatives.

This comment thread should be an opportunity for Republicans to attack their own leadership. Obama didn't do this to you. George Bush and Tom Delay and Mitch McConnell and Congressman Boehner and a majority of Republican Congressmen and Senators did this to you.

Not Obama. He certainly doesn't support what the Arizona government did, but his position is at worst no different than Gerson's, and his actions as chief executive have been no worse than Bush's when it comes to illegal immigration--arguably somewhat better, in fact.

BTW Mr. Gerson is a doctrinaire, conservative Catholic. So are the vast majority of illegal immigrants. His church has ordered him to disobey American laws when they conflict with the Pope's orders. And the Catholic Church has advocated citizenship for illegal immigrants vigorously--which is in its interests to do so, both financially and culturally.

Hmmm.

www.blogzu.blogspot.com

Posted by: ehkzu | May 4, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

SB1070 will inevitably lead to mandates racial profiling and drive a wedge between communities. It basically says - if you happen to look foreign, you need to prove your citizenship. It goes against the civil rights and fundamental values that America was founded upon. What we need is to fix our broken immigration system through workable solutions that unite us together - and reform that respects due process and fairness allows us to celebrate the values that we hold dear - fairness, opportunity and due process. When we deny due process to some people, ultimately it will affect all of us. To take action go to www.restorefairness.org.

Posted by: RestoreFairness | May 4, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

The new law maybe racial but I think that is more ethnic biased. Anthropologically speaking there are 5 (some say 3) races of man. They are Asian & Am. Indian, European, Australian & Oceanic, East African Black and South African Black.

If you are Hispanic then you may be European (Spanish) or Am. Indian (Mayan,etc) Being a Mexican means you are from Mexico. Being Hispanic is ethnic. It means that you or your ancestors came from a Spanish speaking country.
Hispanics have mixed blood from their ancestry just as most humans do including those that are commenting. I read somewhere that all humans have the same genetic makeup - 99.99+%. I guess some won't want to here that OR will say it's not true.

So, It's possible that the law is racial but it's also ethnic. Same old thing - Some Europeans taking over and not liking the people of different racial or ethnic ancestry.

Posted by: mcdonalsherry | May 4, 2010 11:18 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company