Fascism on the march — more states consider “Papers Please” law

What the hey is going on south of the border?  Land of the Free?  Maybe not so much:  Arizona’s racist new anti-illegal immigrant law seems to be catching on.

The law MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow dubbed the “Papers Please” law would allow cops to detain anyone they have “reasonable suspicion” might be an illegal immigrant.  “Reasonable suspicion” being relative to the officer’s mood and thuggishness, I suppose.  The law is so draconian that even legal immigrants could face jail time if they’re detained and found not to be carrying Their Papers.  It’s a pretty obvious mandate for racial profiling of Hispanics and probably the result of utter frustration with a porous border, but that doesn’t make it any less odious, intrusive or wrong.  Accordingly, the law has provoked a shitstorm of controversy, but guess what:  other states are considering similar laws.

Noooo… really?

Yes, really.  Maryland:

At least two state delegates are considering sponsoring anti-illegal immigration legislation in Maryland which replicates a new Arizona law that has drawn criticism from Hispanics, the ACLU and President Barack Obama.

South Carolina:

A handful of South Carolina legislators want an illegal immigration law as tough as Arizona’s new rules.

A group of House Republicans introduced a bill on Thursday requiring police to check immigration status of people they stop and have reasonable suspicion the person is in the country illegally.

Oklahoma:

Not to be outdone by Arizona, some conservative lawmakers in Oklahoma say they plan to introduce a bill similar to that state’s controversial new immigration law.

(I can’t say I’m surprised to see Oklahoma among those states enthusiastically endorsing such state intrusion.  After all, this is a government that recently ruled that women having abortions must be punished during the procedure by getting pointy objects jabbed into their private parts.  But I digress.)

All the enthusiasm for “Papers Please”-type legislation is coming from Republicans:  apparently GOP lawmakers in 10 states are considering such a law.  This is amazing to me:  conservatives should be the last people getting on board with a law that allows such aggressive government overreach.  Shouldn’t they?

Unless conservatism as we once knew it has officially lost all meaning.

17 Responses to “Fascism on the march — more states consider “Papers Please” law”


  1. 1 The Independent Rage Friday, April 30, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    I would call it a shithouse of controversy, but that’s only because I’m not sure what a shitstorm is. But for that matter, what the hell is a “firestorm”?

  2. 2 Bleatmop Friday, April 30, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    JJ – Query: Are you equating conservatism with libertarianism? Or at least “conservatism as we once knew it”?

  3. 3 Brian Friday, April 30, 2010 at 4:59 pm

    …would allow cops to detain anyone they have “reasonable suspicion” might be an illegal immigrant.

    This is inaccurate. They can only apply this law to those with whom they have already made legal contact.

    That is in opposition to every other law, where they can detain you merely for suspicion. A friend of mine was stopped and detained because there had been a bank robbery, and his car matched the description by witnesses. He was detained for no action of his, due to reasonable suspicion. Once it was cleared up, he was free to go with an apology. This is how law enforcement usually acts, but not in the realm of illegal immigration.

    Arizona’s racist new anti-illegal immigrant law…

    This is an inaccurate appellation. A majority of Arizonans are for this law, and a majority of Arizonans support legal immigration. This new law does not address race, and it mirrors current federal law — law which has been in place for years.

    …even legal immigrants could face jail time if they’re detained and found not to be carrying ‘Their Papers.’ 

    Try going to any country as a non-citizen, carry no proof of being there legitimately, and see what happens. Every country (apparently except the US) requires aliens to carry proof of being there legally. If that is, as you say, draconian, then virtually the whole world is draconian. But it isn’t draconian at all, of course.

    It’s a pretty obvious mandate for racial profiling of Hispanics…

    In my opinion, it is only an “obvious” mandate for racial profiling to those who are pre-disposed to see racial profiling where it doesn’t exist.

    All the enthusiasm for “Papers Please”-type legislation is coming from Republicans…

    The majority in Arizona that supports this law exceeds the proportion of the population that is Republican, and not all Republicans support it. Therefore a significant amount of support is coming from quarters other than the GOP.

    [C]onservatives should be the last people getting on board with a law that allows such aggressive government overreach. Shouldn’t they?

    Enforcing the law is not overreach, nor is it aggressive. Enforcing the law is a legitimate government activity. Laws are irritating, but we just have to have them. Having laws without enforcement is the same as having no laws.

    It is interesting, I saw that the Arizona governor’s job approval rating climbed 16 points following singing this new law…

  4. 4 psa Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 4:58 am

    keep polishing turds brian, one of them will shine. that’s what faith is all about.

  5. 5 croghan27 Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 5:05 am

    FWIW – Arizona may have to survive without both those nasty, nasty undocumented aliens (or whatever they are called these days) and baseball.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100430/sp_afp/baseballusaimmigration_20100430234648

    The players union, 28% hispanic want to avoid playing the Diamondbacks as well as in the All Star game in 2011….

    “LOS ANGELES (AFP) – Major League Baseball chiefs were urged to strip Arizona of the 2011 All-Star game on Friday in protest at the state’s tough new immigration law.”

    No word yet from football – they are in the off season.

  6. 6 deBeauxOs Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 9:47 am

    psa, doesn’t Brian have awesome staying power?

    The wrist and forearm force required to polish all these MASSIVE turds Brian has been leaving in JJ’s combox likely comes from all those years of wanking off before he became a Born-Again christofascist.

  7. 7 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 9:58 am

    Independent Rage (love that handle!) – A shitstorm is like, you know, a hellbroth.

  8. 8 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:09 am

    Bleatmop

    Query: Are you equating conservatism with libertarianism? Or at least “conservatism as we once knew it”?

    I guess I’m equating it with Goldwater conservatism, which is libertarian-ish.

    My idea of a real “conservative”, isn’t someone who favours a police state where cops can pull you over for no reason and demand to see “your papers”. That’s the kind of thing that the Soviets used to do, or extreme far-right regimes that bear little resemblance to conservatism.

  9. 9 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:21 am

    Brian

    They can only apply this law to those with whom they have already made legal contact.

    Wasn’t that one of the amendments that was just added yesterday? Before I did this post? :p

    Every country (apparently except the US) requires aliens to carry proof of being there legally.

    Yeah but with a threat of jail time even to a legal immigrant who gets pulled over on his way to 7-11 to get a slurpee?? Seems a little harsh to me.

    In my opinion, it is only an “obvious” mandate for racial profiling to those who are pre-disposed to see racial profiling where it doesn’t exist.

    That’s not me, mon. Look, how else are the cops supposed to judge whether they think someone might be there illegally except for racial profiling? Unless they plan on pulling over white people too, it’s pretty blatant profiling.

    Enforcing the law is not overreach, nor is it aggressive.

    Why do cops hate this new law so much then? This guy’s suing

  10. 10 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:22 am

    psa – :lol: Gotta give him points for persistence…

  11. 11 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:28 am

    croghan – Oh man, that’s sad. I hate to see an economy suffer, but really, who can blame them? Thanks for the link.

  12. 12 JJ Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:28 am

    deBeauxOs – :lol: :lol: :lol:

  13. 13 Bleatmop Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 10:44 am

    JJ – In my experience with Canadian politics, I used to believe the CPC had a larger liberty streak when I was a BT. It was actually one of the top reasons why I identified with the Tories. But then I met the social conservatives.

    The Liberals are no better though. For every gun the LPC wants to take away from people (a large portion of) the CPC wants to force childbirth on a woman. As far as I’m concerned both parties are full of authoritarian asshats. I’m not explored the NDP much, but I’m sure it’s not much different. I don’t really consider myself a libertarian, but I do think the default position should be liberty and that all intrusions must be well supported and regularly reviewed.

  14. 14 Brian Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    “…that’s what faith is all about.”

    That’s what the caricature of faith is all about (a blind leap across a dark chasm), not the genuine meaning of faith.

    The players union, 28% Hispanic want to avoid playing the Diamondbacks as well as in the All Star game in 2011…

    I suspect that contracts will prevent a boycott, and I think this will all have blown over in 3 weeks to a month, anyway.

    Yeah but with a threat of jail time even to a legal immigrant who gets pulled over on his way to 7-11 to get a Slurpee?? Seems a little harsh to me.

    Yeah, I think that would be harsh, but I don’t see that vignette anywhere but in media opinions about the goings on. I suspect that the biggest result of this law is that many individuals of any skin color in Arizona without proper permission will leave, and go elsewhere. Certainty of law enforcement causes a reduction in the population of criminals, and a reduction in crimes by those still present. I think it will work similarly with individuals without legal status. Some will leave, and of those staying they will keep more to themselves. I don’t think there are really going to be very many more arrests than there have been.

    … how else are the cops supposed to judge whether they think someone might be there illegally except for racial profiling?

    This new law provides for law enforcement officer [LEO] behavior after making legal contact for other reasons. Cops have a well developed sense for when something isn’t right during a traffic stop. If they sense that something isn’t right they’ll ask you to step out of the car, ask if you would be willing to open the trunk, they’ll have a K-9 unit come & sniff the trunk seal (if the dog alerts, that is considered probable cause), they’ll detain you while dispatch checks deeper against your name, and so on. I have experienced this myself.

    They physically handle so many licenses, they have a good feel for a counterfeit. There are a lot of variables. Many times, the LEO doesn’t know the skin color or gender of the occupants of a vehicle during a stop, because of tinting, lighting conditions, reflections off the glass and so on.

    So, though race can be involved, there are many ways for this new law to be implemented outside of that. I think we’re all going to be surprised by some of the results of this law, and some of the surprises will be welcomed, and some will be undesirable.

    As I understand it, this law does two things. 1) it duplicates federal law as state law, causing state law enforcement agencies to have scope for enforcing the stipulations of what has been solely federal law. 2) It specifically indemnifies the officer enforcing the law, transferring any legal action to the law enforcement agency instead, unless the officer has acted in ways outside the law. As it has been, LEOs have been reluctant to step in where they think illegal immigration is taking place for fear of being personally sued for enforcing the law. This is similar to the hesitancy some police experience in the use of deadly force, because of how many times a justified shooting turns into a civil suit, destroying the officer’s retirement and reputation, though he not be found guilty of any crime.

    Why do cops hate this new law so much then?

    Because they, like so many others, have nothing but the MSM as a news source. They come home, eat, watch the MainStream news & some sitcoms, then go to bed. All they hear is the media template that this law is racist. Even if they think that the law is not racist, they are aware that a lot of people incorrectly think it is, and they are sensitive to public opinion — it has a big influence on how the public reacts to them.

    … I do think the default position should be liberty and that all intrusions must be well supported and regularly reviewed.

    I wholeheartedly agree, with no reservations.

  15. 15 rev.paperboy Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    two words come to mind: Juan Crow

    I wonder how long you’d spend on Sheriff Joe’s chain gang if you responded to “papers por favor” with “Fuck you, pendejo – I was born here. Let’s see your papers first!”
    I’m guessing by the time you got out of the hospital most of your initial sentence for breathing while being hispanic would be done, but you’d still have time to serve for assaulting the arresting officers by scrapping his knuckles with your teeth

  16. 16 Frank Frink Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    Juan Cuervo, Rev.

  17. 17 Frank Frink Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    or maybe more literally, Diego Cuervo.


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