Maria Elena Salinas: Local, state immigration laws backfire

Using the standard scare tactics the anti-immigrants have pressured local officials to enact ordinances which they cannot even afford to enforce. Between the civil rights lawsuits and the sheer cost of the increased workload for their law officers many towns have been forced to back off these ordinances.

The anti-immigrant protest groups are now grabbing on to the argument that terrorists are crossing the southern border into the United States. This is their effort to scare everyone into anti-Hispanic sentiment and whether or not there are actually terrorists crossing at the southern border their anti-Hispanic efforts are working. The effects of this “counter-terrorism” are being felt in smaller towns which are being destroyed as Hispanic residents leave due to the racism and prejudice of the ordinances and their method of enforcement.

So if you ask me the anti-immigrant protestors are acting like terrorists by destroying the delicate economies of many smaller towns. To think racism doesn’t still exist in the United States would be ludicrous. So it’s no wonder that towns are standing up to say they don’t want Hispanics “flooding” their city. Well people this is American and if you want to be an American then you’d better start accepting people that don’t look like you. Anti-Hispanic sentiment and rally cries don’t fly here.

The favored expression of the anti-immigrant groups is they agree with “legal” immigration, but are simply upset by “illegal” immigration. Well my favorite anti-immigrant is one of these “I’m for legal immigration” people; yet, she secretly bashes Mexicans calling them fat, dirty, and lazy. So does their status as citizens have an effect on this? Does a person who would say these things sound like they’d accept a “legal” Mexican immigrant?

Maria Elena Salinas: Local, state immigration laws backfire
By Maria Elena Salinas

last updated: October 15, 2007 04:21:46 AM

It seemed pretty simple at first. If the federal government doesn’t solve the problems brought on by a broken immigration system, then the cities themselves would take the law into their own hands by passing local ordinances that would make life so miserable for undocumented immigrants that they would just get out of town.

That is how dozens of municipalities across the country attempted to unravel the mess. Now some of those cities are rethinking their strategy.

Among those pulling the plug on their anti-immigrant laws is Riverside, N.J. It was the first municipality in the state to enact legislation that would fine anyone who hired or provided housing for an undocumented immigrant.

Especially hit is the agricultural industry, which has lost about half of its workers. Farmers there could lose up to $60 million in the next two years, according to the Colorado Farm Bureau. The solution, according to Ritter, is a federal immigration reform.


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