An urgent plea for help in Arizona: Stop Criminalization of Our Communities!
We write with an urgent plea for your assistance. This week, the Arizona legislature passed the most anti-immigrant legislation the United States has seen in a generation. We are calling on all who have fought for immigration reform to assist our brothers and sisters in Arizona to turn the tide on hatred, bigotry, and scapegoating that threatens our community. In 2006, we marched by the millions in cities across the country to block a hateful bill that would criminalize immigrants and their supporters. The bill currently before the Governor in Arizona would make the nightmare of Sensenbrenner a reality. Indeed, the bill’s stated intent is to terrorize immigrant families into leaving the state. We must do everything we can to prevent this from happening.
Arizona’s SB 1070 would force police officers to arrest and detain people based on a “reasonable suspicion” that they are undocumented. It’s not surprising that news of this bill has shocked the nation. There is no such thing as looking American or undocumented, and mandating police officers to racially profile sets this country back to a shameful time in its history where racial segregation was the law of the land. The state of Arizona has become home to experimental laws that use immigration as an excuse to criminalize communities of color. We have all seen the devastation caused by Joe Arpaio and others like him. The result of this struggle in Arizona will set the tone for the national debate. We must prevail. The bill is an assault on this nation’s values. Everyone, including the President himself, acknowledges that this is a nation of immigrants: Undocumented immigrants are Americans in Waiting.
We must wait no longer. Please take action by going to www.AltoArizona.com to sign a petition urging the bill’s veto. When you sign the list, you will send a message that the nation is unifying in its condemnation of Arizona’s dangerous legislation. You will continue to receive updates on where we will take things, should the bill be signed into law. Please forward this email to 5 people asking them to do the same. We have all fought hard to earn equality for our friends, colleagues, neighbors, and family who currently live and work in the U.S regardless of immigration status. The time is now for full legalization, not criminalization enacted by racist local demagogues. The time is now for the country to come together to urge the federal government to stop immigrant bashing.
Together We Will, Turn the Tide.
Director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network.