cormac: headshot of me, with a subliminal message (Default)
[personal profile] cormac
So when I'm talking to someone and trying to explain how AZ SB1070 is unconstitutional because it violates 4th amendment rights against unreasonable search and seizure, and they don't seem to understand, would it help if I repeat myself louder and slower?

Date: 2010-05-04 11:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Use smaller words.

Date: 2010-05-04 02:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

But then I would counter and ask you with all sincerity why is it that we don't enforce our imigration laws that are currently in place? It seems really strange to me that so many people wait years to do their paperwork correctly (and I'm not saying that *THAT* mess shouldn't be fixed) but other people just disregard the process and circumvent the system because they just *want* to be here. Um, the people waiting to do their paperwork *want* to be here, too.

The *ONLY* circumstances I'm really torn up about are the children who are brought here as babies and are raised her, who know no other country. I blame the parents for putting them in harm's way. *THESE* are the people for whom, although here illegally, I would like to see a method for their citizenship process to be put in place. But anyone who circumvents the legal system on purpose and just hopes to be not caught... I feel the same way toward them as someone who steals and hopes not to be caught, who speeds and hopes not to be caught, etc. There are consequences when you are caught.

I would love to see an advantage to being a legal citizen, a legal resident, or a legal visitor.

Date: 2010-05-04 03:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
And I would argue three points to your counter. First, the laws are being enforced (INS officers don't just sit in a chair collecting paychecks). But like speeding laws, perpetrators aren't always caught, and those that are caught are treated differently in different jurisdictions. Second, the reason the laws aren't uniformly enforced is the volatile political nature of immigration. Some people believe that illegal immigration is a victimless crime, that the workers put more into the system than they get out of it, and that we should have completely open borders; others see all immigrants (documented and otherwise) as an invading army that must be stopped at all costs. Most people fall somewhere between these two extremes, but it's the extremes that are fueling the debate, and it's the extremes that get donations and win elections. Last, but certainly not least, whether the law is currently enforced or not is beside the point. SB-1070 infringes on citizens' 4th Amendment rights, which shield against unreasonable search and seizure, by essentially requiring every citizen to carry around copies of their birth certificate/passport or risk possible detention and deportation. And a state that requires their own citizenry to carry passports to travel, and has police saying "show me your papers" is not the America I grew up in. That's the Germany my grandparents fled.

This affects us in particular because of Estrella (and Atenvelt events in general). If the Florence police decide that SCA activities constitute reasonable suspicion of any illegal activity (not a difficult assumption even when we're at our best), they can come on site and start demanding papers. All of a sudden, a dozen random fighters from Midrealm who didn't tuck their passport into their gambeson are in the pokey awaiting INS processing.

Not my 4th Amendments Right you don't

Date: 2010-05-04 05:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Show up at their house, tell them you don't have a search warrant but must produce identification that proves they are a citizen. If they are willing to do this, tell them you'll now search their home for illegal drugs and other contraband, such as bomb making equipment, distilling equipment, and unregistered weapons. If they still don't get it, tell them they have to take a history & citizenship class or loose their rights as a citizen.

Date: 2010-05-04 07:27 pm (UTC)
ext_171739: (They will blow your mind!)
From: [identity profile]
I think the point is that by treating everybody as potential criminals, we'll be treating citizens as potential criminals. I couldn't produce my birth certificate were I stopped at a traffic stop, and I doubt that anyone reading this could.

The application of the law wouldn't be fair though, because if you are white-looking, speaking English-well without an accent person then you aren't likely to be harassed by the application of this law. If you're a brown skinned person (any shade) who speaks with an accent (Arnold Schwarzenegger might not count?), then you can be asked for your proof of citizenship or lack thereof.

In the minds of those people who want to kick out all the darkies THAT'S OKAY, because good white American citizens without accents aren't being asked for their papers!

...and the law is supposed to be color blind, applying the law fairly to all individuals. Or something like that. It's not a perfect world though. "Driving while black" is still a very real application of law in some parts of the country, and I don't think that a fair-skinned British national permanently visiting Phoenix illegally is going to be asked for his proof of papers, but a dark-skinned Mexican, even one in the US legally, would be.

Babbling here, but the fact that some people can consider that and not see the potential for injustice blows my mind.


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