So if you were to be pulled over by the police today, say for speeding or something, would you be able to prove that you’re a citizen, as the state of Arizona will now require? I don’t know about you, but I’m not in the habit of carrying my passport or birth certificate with me when I go about my daily business. I suppose I could show them my voters registration card, but the Republican Party has spent the past few years trying to convince us that isn’t sufficient identification for voting purposes, so I don’t see how it could be good enough to prove that I belong here. No, I’m thinking it’s going to have to be passports and birth certificates for everyone, unless Arizona decides to issue its own government-issued “Please Don’t Deport Me” ID cards. I’m old enough to remember when conservatives thought that was a Very Bad Idea, but I suppose things are different now.
Of course, I’d never get asked by a cop for my papers because I don’t look like an immigrant. Only folks who arouse valid reasons for suspicion of their legal status, for reasons other than looking or sounding like an immigrant because that would be racial profiling, which the state of Arizona promises us will totally never happen just as it’s never happened anyplace else, will be asked to produce their docs. So in the unlikely event I need to travel to Arizona – I do not intend to choose to visit there any time soon; seriously, have they learned nothing from the Evan Mecham experience? – I shouldn’t need to bring my passport with me.
Anyway. I join with religious leaders, President Obama, State Rep. Garnet Coleman, and many local activists in condemning this racist and retrograde legislation. Hell, even the country’s most notorious xenophobe thinks Arizona went too far. The sooner it is overturned, and the sooner we quit doing stupid things like this, the better.