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SB 1070 and a Wake Up Call

posted Wednesday July 28th, 2010

I’ll admit to some SB1070 fatigue.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know all about Arizona’s incredibly onerous anti-immigration law, signed this spring by our lovely governor. When she did it, I — along with most everyone I know (with some notable exceptions I’ll leave out so you don’t start hating people I love) was beyond horrified.

Me, too. I posted my concerns in a piece about a dear friend’s adopted daughter. That blog post got more hits in a day than any piece I’ve written about Sophie in more than two years of Girl in a Party Hat.

But as the weeks dragged on, even I found myself sick of the endless media coverage. Enough already, okay? I get it.

Do I?

Yesterday, a pal stopped by my office to talk about something work-related, and we got to chatting instead about SB 1070, which takes effect tomorrow. My friend, who’s about as white as I am (which is pretty darn white) told me a story about a friend of hers. This friend-of-a-friend is middle upper class and Latino. She drives a high-end car, my friend couldn’t recall what kind, maybe an Escalade.

“She’s been stopped by the cops 25 times in the last year,” my friend told me.

The Latino woman is no shrinking violet; she tells the cops to leave her alone or she’ll “go El Cajon on your ass” and so far, they’ve left her alone.

“I’ve probably been stopped five times in my life,” my friend mused, “and trust me, each time I more than deserved it.”

We both shook our heads, and I haven’t been able to shake the conversation since.

SB1070 is a big fucking deal, even though this morning word came down that a U.S. District Court judge largely neutered it — for the time being.

From now on, I promise, I’m going to try to stay awake.

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Tags: Filed under: politics by Amysilverman

One Response to “SB 1070 and a Wake Up Call”

  1. Not a day goes by where it doesn’t comes up. I want to do my share to make my objections public and point out the fallacies and legal weaknesses (as well as the blatant racism), I am also fighting bouts of fatigue. While most of my friends and family and colleagues see the injustice in the law, there are still those I love who support it. I think that is what gets the most tiring. When I am with them, there is no discussing it. It either begins with a silent agreement to not discuss it or it turns into a situation where I don my shell and throw up reflective shields of fallacy spotting from some long ago class in logic and critical thinking or have to quote snipits of history. I have been “defriended” by a few on Facebook because of my view. Other friends (and these are usually people I have know for decades through past lives) will post near hateful responses to my posts. I often let my other anti-SB1070 FB friends handle them, and they do a good job. What is the most tiring, I think, is the self-check I seem to be constantly performing. Unlike many supporters of the law, I refuse to get hateful in my responses. I work hard to bring up facts and examples and context. I think the trickiest part, though, is to not employ education snobbery. So often I am tempted to use my degrees to “one up” my opponent and dazzle them into shutting up with my extensive knowledge of Mexican-American, American, and World history, but then I feel the fingers of fatigue gripping me again. While I can stay awake enough to watch the road, I have learned to choose my battles or rely on my readied FB friends to handle various scrimmages that happen there, so I am energetically available for the face to face ones. This fight is not nearly over and while keeping eyes open is crucial, so is conserving energy in order to endure what may lie ahead.

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