Arizona shooting

Not a good week for Arizona.

“The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous. And unfortunately Arizona I think is the capital. We are the Mecca for prejudice for prejudice and bigotry,”

via ABC News: Police Hunt for ‘Person of Interest’ in Tucson Shooting

Yesterday a deranged murderer interrupted a gathering arranged by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. She was shot and is in critical condition. 6 innocent people were killed including a 9-year-old child.

The Not-Our-Fault reverse blame game started immediately. Some shrieking radical right-wing blogs wasted no time declaring that the shooter was not one of theirs. This always starts with “the victims are in our prayers” but degenerates into “the left are scum”. This is not a surprise since I rarely come across a conservative blog that’s not a radical pool of nuts. Some of the sites I frequent were actually subdued. The commentators? Not so much.

That doesn’t surprise me. Blog comments are easy and do attract the radical fringe.

Naturally, many people are pointing the finger at the half-term governor. I think that’s only partially correct. When you have political protests and people talk about armed insurrection, they’re culpable for atrocities like this one. The half-term governor is more at fault because she claims to be a leader.

Leaders take responsibility, so except for some quaint statements I’m not anticipating much from her.

You can’t yell “Fire!” in a crowded theater and claim no responsibility when someone get’s trampled in a stampede. That the shooter may not be Tea Party inspired doesn’t change the fact that they were encouraging people to do this.

Do you think if this happens again, the radicals will stand up and say “yep, that one was ours. Here’s his membership card.” Also, why is this not being called a terrorist act?

I’m just asking. Don’t worry, I don’t like to incite violence either.

Is Arizona’s new motto “Latinos Not Welcomed”?

I’m beginning to believe that Arizona’s State Government just hates anything remotely Latino.

For all of that and more, Mr. Acosta’s class and others in the Tucson Unified School District’s Mexican-American program have been declared illegal by the State of Arizona — even while similar programs for black, Asian and American Indian students have been left untouched.

via Arizona Orders Tucson to End Mexican-American Studies Program – NYTimes.com.

The emphasis above is mine. I question why they leave any other program’s alone. Maybe they’re just aiming for the low hanging fruit? I mean, seriously, “Programs that promote the overthrow of the United States government are explicitly banned”? The curriculum covered that?

Good thing Arizona doesn’t manage CUNY.

One of the things that has always infuriated me is that there are legitimate concerns and questions about the United States immigration policies and enforcement of those policies. But the wingnuts on both sides of the debate always go to the extreme, so nothing gets done and nothing changes.

Take this exchange in Arizona as a perfect example: this is targeting Mexican’s by people who just don’t like anything Mexican. They conveniently exclude (for now at least) other “non-American” material just to express their dislike.

Aside from targeting on minority (or not minority!) what does this accomplish?

Arizona, where fear lives and becomes law

I’ve never been to Arizona and thanks to their new law, odds are I will never go. Yesterday Governor Jan Brewer signed into law a federal immigration bill to make it illegal for immigrants to not carry their papers. Yes, the states think they can pass federal immigration policy law and I guess they can.

From the New York Times article:

The law, which proponents and critics alike said was the broadest and strictest immigration measure in generations, would make the failure to carry immigration documents a crime and give the police broad power to detain anyone suspected of being in the country illegally.

My wife is a naturalized citizen and many of my friends are too. Unless you have American Indian blood in you, odds are you are from a family of immigrants. Many people in the United States speak with an accent from being fluent in a foreign language.

In about 90 days that accent can cause a police office in Arizona to demand to see your papers. If you don’t have them or don’t produce them, then you can go to jail for being a suspected illegal immigrant. My wife is Asian but hey, the supporters of this bill claim that racial profiling will not be used so we’re all suspect and will need to carry our papers.

Not producing your papers will be a crime in Arizona. Do you think the people of Arizona really had this in mind when they were called a “Red State”?

This new law is firmly based in fear. Arizona is on the border of Mexico and they 100% do have a problem with illegal immigration. Innocent ranchers have been murdered and the killers are suspected to illegal immigrants from Mexico. Even that Anti-Maverick Senator McCain is spewing fear based rumors. No surprise there, since his time is almost up and he’ll spout whatever lies he needs to get re-elected.

Illegal immigrants are blamed for insurance fraud (thanks Senator!), lack of health care coverage, the current condition of schools, and sometimes even spreading leprosy. The bad economy? It’s the illegal immigrants fault.

That’s a nice bogey man to have and I can’t wait for the “Stop Illegal Immigrants” propaganda posters. I’m not really surprised: Arizona also has a bill on the table that is aimed at denying that President Obama is an American citizen, and they lie about that too.

This is not the solution. If the Federal Government can’t protect the border then bring back the National Guard and solve the problem. It won’t do anything to reduce the murders or save the state economy but at least it will get the border protected.

In the United States we have protests, we disagree publicly and loudly, we go where we want, read what we want, and we never ever show our papers. Or if we don’t show our papers, we don’t go to jail for that reason. Some other excuse is used.

But soon if you don’t show your papers in Arizona you’ll go to jail. Thanks Arizona, but I’m not willing to bring my family to a state like that.