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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Legal racial profiling a no-win situation

As a current resident of the state of Arizona, I am embarrassed by Arizona Sen. Russell Pearce (R-Mesa). As an out-of-state student, he has forced me to question why I came to such an illogical place. He forces me to question the hope of goodness in humanity. For those who are curious as to where my seemingly harsh comments are being derived, Pearce is the sponsor of the offensive piece of state legislation SB1070. This bill makes being an undocumented immigrant in Arizona a misdemeanor, and gives law enforcement officials the power to force any citizen to produce documents verifying their legal status in this country based on nothing more than the vague notion of “”reasonable suspicion.””

In other words, this bill legalizes racial profiling in the Grand Canyon State.

The bill has already passed in both houses of the state legislature and awaits a signature by Gov. Jan Brewer. Her pen holds the power to seal the legal abuse of the civil rights for more than a quarter of Arizona’s residents who identify themselves as Latino/Hispanic. These tactics are reminiscent of Nazi Germany and the U.S.S.R. Next thing you know we will be required to wear our citizenship status on our sleeves. Where do we draw the line on how far we can infringe on our citizens’ rights once we have begun to defile all that we, as a country, have worked so hard for and believe so deeply in?

Being a person of Latino decent, I am absolutely astonished at the blatantly racist actions of the Arizona State Legislature. I, like millions of others, want immigration reform. However, bringing into effect legislation that infringes on the civil rights of even one of our citizens is unbelievably unacceptable and must be stopped. The issues lie in the current immigration system. We need immigration reform, not racial profiling.

Furthermore, the legal ramifications of the bill have also been discussed. If passed, the lawsuits Arizona could incur would potentially cripple an already financially inept state to begin with.

To conclude, I congratulate Sen. Pearce and his colleagues on a job well done, for they have demonstrated a truly inspirational model for the youth of today. We have now been shown exactly what not to do. We will learn from these individuals’ actions and we will work harder than ever to correct their failings. Thank you, for giving us even more fodder for our flame. We are the future and we will remember this.

— Tyler Quillin is a junior majoring in English and philosophy.

He can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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