|Tijuana: The end of a 3-hour pedestrian line to cross into
the US on December 28, 2010
When Arizona passed SB1070 there were cries of outrage on both sides of the border. Mexican politicians urged their constituents to boycott the US in retaliation. That boycott lasted about as long as a pint of whiskey in a five-handed poker game.
In case some reader has not read The Fulano Files, most everything is cheaper in the US than in Mexico, and of better quality…and the Mexicans know it.
That famous quote is attributed to 19th Century British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli.
There is an interesting proof of Disraeli’s statement currently circulating on the internet and in the press. A pro-immigrant group named, America’s Voice, has circulated some statistics to demonstrate that Arizona SB1070 is ill-conceived because crime rates in Arizona have been dropping.
Below is the chart they have produced, which is widely circulated and shows that crime in Arizona’s major metropolitan areas dropped between 12% to 31% since 2002, with most of that drop after 2007. That is except for Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s jurisdiction, where crime had increased by 58%. They use this chart as proof-positive that targeting illegal immigrants actually increases crime. This is what they say:
Unfortunately, the evidence shows that the Arpaio approach is a proven failure at reducing crime. From 2002 to 2009, the crime rate in Maricopa County has increased 58 percent, while the state as a whole averaged a 12 percent decrease. Compare that 58 percent crime increase to other localities of Arizona that did not use the immigrant-targeting approach. In that same time period, Phoenix enjoyed a 14 percent decrease; Tempe, a 26 percent decrease; and Mesa, a 31 percent decrease.
Sounds like a compelling argument, right? Wrong. There is something that America’s Voice omitted from the statistics. A Department of Homeland Security report on illegal immigrants estimates Arizona’s illegal immigrant population peaked in 2008 at 560,000, and a year later dipped to 460,000. So then, the entire drop in crime rates in Arizona can be fully explained by the exodus of 100,000 illegal immigrants from Arizona.
Oh, there is one other little, minor problem with their chart. Read the footnote which says: “The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office did not report full crime statistics to the state in 2005.” Now look at the chart line for Maricopa County again. Notice that between 2004 and 2007 it is a straight line, with no bends? It is the only line on the chart like that. That is because America’s Voice has relegated to a footnote the fact that the data reported for Maricopa from 2002 through 2009 is not consistent data. More crime reporting data was added after 2005. There was NOT a 58% increase in crime in Maricopa County, there was a change in the manner data was reported. These people actually made up a BS statement about Arpaio, and the impact on crime of enforcing immigration laws, just to have an explanation to fit the line on the chart…a lie that is nothing more than a useless data-gap artifact.
The Mexican Foreign Ministry released a report card on Arizona as SB 1070 was implemented last week. Here is a summary of what they reported:
- 88.6% of the Hispanic population of Arizona was born in Mexico
- Between 400,000 and 530,000 undocumented Mexicans live in Arizona
- Approximately 1,800,000 people of Mexican birth live in Arizona
- Between January and June of this year, 4,047 unaccompanied minors were deported from Arizona back to Mexico
- Between January and July of this year, 154 Mexicans illegally crossing the border died in the Arizona desert
Link to the article in Spanish.
Over the next few days, everyone and his brother is going to have his own spin on what Judge Susan Bolton’s ruling today on Arizona SB1070 means. Arizona governor Jan Brewer has already stated that she will be filing an expedited appeal, which would be to the 9th District Court of Appeals. I don’t expect much to come of that, since the 9th District is the most liberal court in the US, and is routinely overruled by the Supreme Court. The real showdown will be in the Supreme Court.
There are winners and losers on both sides of this, and I do not think anyone can claim a victory. Let me explain who I believe lost today.
Every national poll taken on SB1070 shows that two-thirds of the citizens of the United States support it. In what will probably be recorded as the biggest political blunder in the modern history of the US, President Obama went against the judgment of the majority of the people and sued Arizona to overturn SB1070. People don’t like that. People are beginning to think that Obama is not their president. The mid-term elections are now only three months away, and SB1070 will be in the news every day as it wends its way up to the Supreme Court.
Judge Bolton has ruled that cities cannot prohibit the enforcement of federal immigration laws. That means any city with an ordinance prohibiting such enforcement is now in violation of federal law. Wake up San Francisco.
Judge Bolton allowed certain provisions of SB1070 to stand, and they will be in effect tomorrow. Allowed to stand are the laws dealing with human smuggling and making it a state crime to transport illegal aliens. Better think about that one. If a legal resident of Arizona is stopped while one of his illegal primos is in the car (there are many mixed families of legals/illegals) then the legal resident can be charged with a crime.
The judge also refused to grant an injunction against sections 7 through 13 of SB 1070. Among other things, those sections of the law contain a prohibition barring employers from knowingly hiring illegal immigrants. So hiring an illegal immigrant in Arizona is now a federal and a state crime.
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I also want to clear up some confusion that the mass media is spreading. Judge Bolton put an injunction against the provision in SB1070 that required law enforcement to check the immigration status of people they have legitimate contact with. The word required is the operative word here. While they are not required to check, there is absolutely no prohibition against a police officer checking the immigration status of a person, if he so chooses. Federal law requires federal authorities to respond to all requests for verification of immigration status.
Christian Ramírez was born in Tijuana in in 1976. In 1986 he moved to San Diego. He is a graduate of San Diego State University, where he studied anthropology and history. Most of his adult life he has worked for non-governmental agencies for the defense of human rights in Southern California. From 2001 to 2006 he was director of the San Diego office of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). He is currently the National Coordinator of AFSC. He has often been invited to speak on the subject of human rights and migration in national and international conferences. One could say he is an expert on the subject.
So, why am I telling everybody all this?
Today, Christian Ramírez gave an interview to Frontera, the Tijuana newspaper, where he was speaking about immigrants leaving Arizona ahead of the effective date of Arizona SB1070. Ramírez said, “we are worried about this situation since they have the right to live where they want and not be forced out like is happening.”
Well, there you have it from an expert, a new human right to live wherever you want. I’m going down to Ocean Beach and tell every bum, crack addict, pervert and lunatic I can find to move in with Christian.
During a visit today, July 16, to the Universidad Jesuita de Guadalajara (ITESO), American ambassador to Mexico Carlos Pascual stated that Arizona Law SB1070 is, “a violation of civil rights,” and it could create “a form of apartheid.”
“The application may force differentiation based on ethnicity,” the diplomat said, pointing out the discrimination of black people who lived in South Africa for decades and which was abolished in 1991.
Of course, these statements by Ambassador Pascual were only published in the Spanish language Mexican newspapers and are presumably for Mexican consumption. Not a peep about this was seen in any American newspapers.
And this man works for the US government and supposedly represents US interests in Mexico? No mames.
Link to article in Spanish