On Friday, February 25, Derechos Humanos is sponsoring a demonstration to protest Arizona Emperor Russell Pearce’s omnibus SB1611 (nicknamed SB1070 on steroids) and other recent racist laws passed or considered by the Arizona Legislature. The protest will be held at 4 p.m. at the state building in downtown Tucson (corner of Congress and Granada).
SB1611 is so far-reaching that it forces citizens and institutions at multiple levels of society to become immigration officers. Radio, newspaper, and citizen journalists have decried SB1611 because it will force schools, universities, hospitals, and even homeschooling moms to verify citizenship of the people to whom they provide services. It also includes strict penalties for non-compliance; for a complete list, check this link.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union:
“This bill is miles beyond SB1070 in terms of its potential to roll back the rights and fundamental freedoms of both citizens and non-citizens alike,” said Alessandra Soler Meetze, executive director of the ACLU of Arizona. “It demonstrates the lack of leadership, lack of priorities and complete lack of understanding by some Arizona lawmakers of what it really means to uphold the Constitution of the United States and Arizona.”
In addition to 1611, the Arizona Legislature has passed or is considering several other racist laws:
1225– targets forgery of documents used to rent, purchase or lease a dwelling in order to prevent drop houses that could hold undocumented people, but the law could be used to entrap and penalize innocent people who are knowingly or unknowingly helping friends who are not citizens.
SB1308– one of the so-called “anchor baby” laws which would change who is eligible to receive citizenship and a US birth certificate and regulate how the new Arizona birth certificates will work with US birth certificates (which would still recognize the 14th amendment).
SB1309– another “anchor baby” law which would dictate who is eligible to receive “Arizona citizenship.”
SB1405– restricts who can receive hospital services in Arizona and mandates that hospital personnel verify citizenship and call immigration– rather than provide services– when they discover an undocumented patient.
SB1509– increases the penalty for making false statements under oath.
Of course, this is far from a complete list of crazy and unnecessary bills being considered by the Arizona Legislature this session.
Ironically, in just a few weeks, the Teapublican candidates who campaigned on smaller government and more freedom have proposed more than 600!!!! pieces of new legislation that do nothing to solve the state’s problems or give Arizonans more freedom. If anything– except for loosening gun laws even further– the new bills restrict the freedom of Arizonans. For the most part these bills are: pro-gun, anti-women’s rights, anti-anyone-who-is-not-straight-and-white, anti-poor-and-sick people, pro-fetus-but-anti-children, anti-education, anti-federal government, anti-municipal government, and my personal favorite…authorization of half-a-billion in corporate welfare. Groan…
So, if you are fed up with Emperor Pearce’s shenanigans, come out tomorrow with a sign denouncing your favorite piece of Legislative nonsense and bring a friend!