Crossing over - Page 5

Arizona law changing the political dynamics on immigration, in SF and across the country

Thousands poured into the streets on May 1 to march for federal immigration reform

Angela Chan, staff attorney at the Asian Law Caucus, an immigrant advocacy group, hopes the outcry in San Francisco and throughout the country will be the match that lights the fire for humane and comprehensive immigration reform. "We can no longer wait and allow states and local governments to try — often foolishly, like in the case of Arizona — to take matters in their own hands," she told us.

Chan sees parallels between Arizona and what happened during the civil rights movement when police attacked African American demonstrators in Birmingham, Ala. "When there is gross injustice, the hearts and minds of Americans are moved by these images now, as they were then," Chan said. "I do believe comprehensive immigration reform will come about, if not now then very soon, as a result."

But she notes that what is happening in Arizona is not isolated.

"In San Francisco, for almost two years now, we have had a policy instituted by Mayor Newsom that requires probation officers to report youth to ICE based only on 'reasonable suspicion' that they are undocumented," Chan explained, echoing language from the Arizona law. "The good news is, with the mayor's strong stance against the Arizona bill, it is an opportunity for him to reevaluate his own policies in San Francisco and do the right thing here. San Francisco can and should be a leader on immigrant rights."


Is Arizona's immigration law racial profiling on its face or as it is likely to be applied? The law clearly targets undocumented Latinos crossing from Mexico into Arizona in search of employment. And it targets drug-related violence by Mexican drug cartels. Arizona has about 1.7 million persons of Hispanic or Latino origin most of whom are legal residents, but may be unwitting targets of the new law. There are heated arguments on both sides. It is now for the courts to decide. In my opinion, however, the law will never see the light of day. The law will probably be struck down because Arizona cannot enact its own scheme to regulate immigration. Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress the exclusive power "to establish an uniform rule of naturalization [and immigration]."

Posted by Guest on May. 05, 2010 @ 11:33 am

Regardless of your stance on illegal immigration there is no question that comprehensive reform needs to be taken up on all levels NOW. It's a tax on our many resources, criminals are too often given "sanctuary" by cities like SF ignoring Federal law, and families are being unfairly torn apart in those rare moments when the law decides to enforce.

Posted by Keith on May. 17, 2010 @ 8:02 am

As a San Franciscan, I am in support of completely sealing up our border, but also in conjunction with offering temporary work visas to those that want to work in the US. As a result, workers can travel back and forth across the border, and those trying to sneak in will most likely be drug smugglers. Out social services are taking a hit by millions of illegal aliens, whatever race they may be, loitering, automobile accidents, tax evasion, crime, gangs, incarceration. We can let them stay and work, but we must acknowledge them as human beings with a permit or work visa. This will create a revenue that can be used to help fight drug smuggling and mafia activity. The Arizona law is a step in the right direction.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 15, 2010 @ 10:06 am

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