Tuesday, April 27, 2010

New Arizona Immigration Law

Hey! I know I've been saying this a lot lately, but I really don't have much time to post today. That's probably okay, since I don't have a lot of time things to write about, anyway.
I'm not a big fan of this new Arizona law that seems to allow state law enforcement officials to stop people that they suspect of being illegal immigrants and force them to produce documentation that proves they are legally present in the U.S.. For one thing, this law seems to swing the door wide open for the police to stop anyone who's of Hispanic descent and demand to see identification at any given time (which raises troubling racial profiling issues). Also, this new Arizona law seems to challenge federal law in on immigration (I guess it's not clear whether it specifically contradicts federal law, but it certainly adds additional state requirements in an area which has traditionally been solely under federal jurisdiction). The Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution dictates that federal law trumps state law, and on a more practical level, I think that allowing different states to come up with different laws and regualtions in this are could create a horrible mishmash on differing (and possibly conflicting?) laws that foreigners would have to understand and abide by while visiting out country.
It's just a bad law.
Well, I gotta go, but I hope you guys are having a good one!


Paul Toohey said...

I agree. That law is scary. I would be terrified if I was someone who could easily be "identified" as a possible illegal immigrant, and I would be terrified to be a peace officer expected to somehow figure out how to do my job in accordance to that law. Bad news no matter how you look at it.

J.S. said...

Agreed. I hadn't even really thought about potential civil law ramifications for police officers who violate civil rights through racial profiling, but those potential ramifications certainly exist!