Key Provisions of SB1070 Struck Down by Supreme Court

Key Provisions of SB1070 Struck Down by Supreme Court

Tucson : AZ : USA | Jun 25, 2012 at 2:35 PM PDT
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Key Elements of Racial Profiling Law Struck down

As of July 2011, Arizona border cities in Pinal and Pima counties reported the lowest crime rates in the state. Not much has changed since then.

Taking into consideration the overreaching efforts of Gov. Jan Brewer, who squawked endlessly about crime and "beheaded illegal aliens" all over the Arizona borders, the story border security tells doesn't match the aggressive legal measures.

In what is properly known as the "show me your papers" law, SB1070 was about nothing more than racial profiling. According to what many of the border police and sheriffs said who live and work along Pinal and Pima counties, and the Tucson area, the "hype is total nonsense." In their professional estimation, Brewer was only dipping deep into the histrionic well for an election year win.

In essence, the "show me your papers” law means that when a police officer stops a person for any reason whatsoever, they are also allowed to ask for evidence of their right to be in the United States.

These are the provisions that were struck down:

*A requirement that all immigrants obtain or carry immigration registration papers.

*A provision making it a state criminal offense for an illegal immigrant to seek work or hold a job.

*A provision that would allow police to arrest suspected illegal immigrants without warrants.

According to most people who oppose this law, it was a wasted effort to legalize racial profiling, because the border authorities were already doing an excellent job and nothing was going on when Brewer got elected that wasn't already being handled. The "beheaded aliens" were over in the Mexico deserts for the most part, not on the Arizona side. And they were about as close to Arizona as Putin's tiny little head was in proximity to Sarah Palin's back yard in Alaska.

The essence (gut) of the attempt to legalize racial profiling was stripped out, but its heart remains ... and no one is sure if it means that everyone is now going to have to carry citizen registration papers to drive or just to walk down the street. Throwing out the piece about not requiring people to carry papers is moot if the police are allowed to stop people for "other" reasons, and THEN ask for their papers.

As a matter of note, Gov. Brewer was installed to replace former governor Janet Napolitano, who is currently serving as the third United States Secretary of Homeland Security under the Obama administration. Brewer went "reaching" beyond the pale of immigration law when her term was up, in a semi-thwarted attempt to usurp federal authority and stick a feather in her Brownie cap and call it macaroni.

One thing is certain, piecemeal or makeshift state laws that usurp federal authority over immigration aren't going to resolve Arizona's, or the nation's, immigration "problem" (the problem that wasn't); especially since the real implication was that Border Patrol wasn't already doing a good job before Brewer decided to leverage radical Republican Tea Party racist extremism to get herself elected governor.

If you like writing about U.S. politics and the 2012 campaign, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize, to be awarded after the November election.


Supreme Court Split over SB1070: 3/1

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Not those papers?
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greeneink is based in Denver, Colorado, United States of America, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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