This post was written by Chantal Flores, a Nation intern and freelance writer living in New York City.
On April 20, nine students were arrested after chaining themselves to the Arizona State Capitol in protest to Arizona’s anti-immigrant bill. Three days later, Governor Brewer signed SB 1070, a draconian law that makes it a state crime to be illegal in Arizona.
The new law, which gives the police power to stop and detain any person when “reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien,” will lead to widespread discrimination and harassment. The question is, how can you identify an illegal immigrant without employing racial profiling? On The Daily Show, Jon Stewart tackled the question.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Law & Border|
Political leaders are calling for economic boycotts, yet there are concerns that this could unfairly hurt Arizona workers, many of whom are illegal immigrants themselves. Michael Yaki from the San Francisco Chronicle explains why economic boycotts can be a powerful weapon if applied with “intensive, calculated, concerted action.”
Since even before the signing of the law, grassroots organizations and community members have been coming together to call for immigrant solidarity across the nation. The National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights is encouraging people to raise their voice for equality by urging them to call and email Gov. Brewer to let her know that the law is a “disaster for the rights of all our communities.”
In response to the bill, the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, which fights for the rights of day laborers, launched the website Alto Arizona (Stop Arizona). You can sign this petition asking President Obama to take immediate action and reform immigration policy. Donations are also accepted with all proceeds going directly into organizing on the ground.
This Monday, May Day, immigrant rights advocates and supporters will rally and march nationwide in support of legislative reform and workers' rights and against the Arizona law. In New York City, activists will gather at Union Square Park at noon. In Phoenix, there's be an evening vigil at the State Capitol. The Coalición de Derechos Humanos (The Human Rights Coalition) will be marching through the streets of Tucson as part of La Gran Marcha. In San Francisco, there'll be a day-time march to City Hall. There are hundreds of events scheduled for Monday. Find one near you.
For updates, join the Facebook group "1 million strong against the Arizona Immigration Law SB1070" or go and spread the word to overturn this racist law.