[On Wednesday] the Latino Policy Coalition condemned the xenophobic actions of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer for signing into law racial profiling. LPC charged SB 1070 as blatant pandering to conservative extremists.Sadly, Governor Brewer has chosen not to learn from former California Governor Pete Wilson's failed attempt to legislate hate in 1994 through Proposition 187. Not only did California's Republican Party forever damage their reputation with Latino voters, but U.S. District Judge Mariana Pfaelzer struck down the legislation as unconstitutional clearly stating, "The state is powerless to enact its own scheme to regulate immigration … the authority to regulate immigration belongs exclusively to the federal government." Only four days after the signing of SB 1070 into law, the repercussions are proving Arizona's shortsightedness. La Opinion, the largest Spanish-language newspaper in the U.S. has called for the boycott of all goods and services that originate from Arizona. Latino truck drivers are refusing to drive through the state, the City of San Francisco introduced a resolution to sever all contracts with the state and Arizona businesses; and President Barack Obama has stated that he believes the new law to be "fundamentally unfair." And that only appears to be the beginning. A contingent that includes United Farm Workers co-founder Dolores Huerta, and singer Linda Ronstadt - who grew up in a Mexican-American family in Tucson, Arizona will travel to Phoenix this Thursday for a rally anticipated to draw tens of thousands denouncing the legislation. These calls to action are a direct reflection of the sweeping shift our country has seen in the last three Presidential elections. The Latino share of the electorate has grown 80%, reflecting a palpable power shift in the Latino electorate that continues to mobilize in the fight for equality. "The U.S. Congress must take action to pass comprehensive immigration reform that includes a path towards citizenship and ensures family reunification," said Jim Gonzalez, chair of the Latino Policy Coalition. "The United States' economy has thrived because of its immigrant communities. Immigrants are responsible for a wealth of tax revenues, security, and richness of American heritage. This legislation is also an insulting slap in the face to the more that 1.1 million Latino veterans and war heroes who put their lives on the line to defend our country," concluded Gonzalez. Contributed by the Latino Policy Coalition, a national non-partisan non-profit consortium of the country's leading Latino research organizations and scholars. Chaired by former San Francisco City and County Supervisor Jim Gonzalez, the LPC seeks to highlight Latino community views on key national issues; and thus stimulate public policy debate among local, state and national elected officials.
********** Published: April 30, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 2