serious proposal to deal with this issue came from George W. Bush, late in his first term. It was one of the very few things I ever agreed with him on. Of course, he got horrible backlash from his own party and the proposal died a very quick death.
serious proposal to deal with this issue came from George W. Bush, late in his first term. It was one of the very few things I ever agreed with him on. Of course, he got horrible backlash from his own party and the proposal died a very quick death.
In a committee hearing, Rep. Virgil Peck, R-Tyro, introduced a question he was asking regarding the hunting of feral swine in Kansas with what he says he intended to be a joke:
"Looks like to me, if shooting these immigrating feral hogs works, maybe we have found a (solution) to our illegal immigration problem."
Have Another Hit Of Colorado Sunshine
So, the Arizona boycott has been a smashing success. It will be considered the model for response when a podunk state legislature decides to get aggressively racist.
I look forward to seeing One Day As A Lion at Coachella. Lulz to all of you naysayers.
This is some crazy shit. If the story isn't bad enough the racists reveling in the comment section is rather disturbing. I took a break from reading the comments to AZ Central stories because of how angry they are...
Arizona Department of Education confirms substitute's identity
The author’s identity has been released, but questions are still swirling around a controversial letter read last week on the Senate floor.
Senate Democrats held a media conference Tuesday morning questioning whether Tony Hill really is a substitute teacher and whether he actually wrote the letter that said “most of the Hispanic students do not want to be educated but rather be gang members.”
In a phone interview with The Arizona Republic on Monday, Hill said he did write the letter and that every word of what happened in that classroom was true.
He declined to name the school, saying it was a public grade 4-8 school in Glendale.
The Arizona Board of Education has confirmed that Hill is a certified substitute teacher, but spokesman Andrew LeFevre said the state doesn’t have complete current data to say which school Hill may have been at.
Glendale, Peoria and Pendergast school districts have no record of Hill teaching there. Deer Valley has not returned calls seeking information.
Senate President Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, said he received the letter from Hill and forwarded it to other Republican lawmakers.
“They have a right to hear it and see it,” Pearce said. “This is the personal experience of a teacher.”
Pearce did not answer questions about whether he verified Hill’s story. He said lawmakers could read it and “decide for themselves.”
Sen. Steve Gallardo, D-Phoenix, said he’s still researching the issue before making a decision, but said he did not believe the letter was legitimate. He had not heard back from the Department of Education at that point. He said substitutes typically have to file paperwork describing how classes went each day and that could confirm Hill's story.
The letter states that the students in his class were writing letters to Sen. Steve Gallardo, D-Phoenix, after watching a video of Gallardo on Lou Dobbs. Hall said that he taught the class a few days before the March 15 letter was written.
Gallardo said he was on Lou Dobbs in 2007 and as of Tuesday had not yet received any such letters from students.
Gallardo said he was also checking with Maricopa County to see if anyone named Tony Hill was registered to vote and had listed his occupation as a teacher. He said he had confirmed that no Tony Hill was registered to vote in Litchfield Park, where Hill lists his post office box address.
“Who is this person?” Gallardo asked. “Bring them down to the Capitol.”
U.S. Appeals Court rules against Arizona’s Nazi law.
Last edited by obzen; 04-11-2011 at 12:03 PM.
Without them, none of this would be possible. Lulz to all of you naysayers!
Nazi law. That makes it serious.
or Sound Strike fail...
The Sound Strike has hit a rough patch.
Yesterday, a federal appeals court again blocked SB 1070, which you can read all about on our Feathered Bastard blog, meaning the extremist Arizona immigration law will likely never take effect. That's great news for people who support the state's migrant community, but not necessarily for people interested in using Arizona's obvious troubles to make a larger political point.
Moreover, the musical boycott of the state has faced several high-profile defections in recent weeks. Though organizers were apparently able to bully guyliner-wearing pop-punk band My Chemical Romance into backing out of their Arizona show a few months back, they haven't had such luck with Steve Earle and Los Tigres del Norte.
Earle, a country-rock singer-songwriter with a strong activist streak, is listed on The Sound Strike's artist roster but has a gig scheduled at Tucson's Rialto Theatre on July 4.
Los Tigres del Norte, a Mexican-bred norteño combo, is also listed as boycotting although they have a show scheduled in Tucson on April 24.
How is Sound Strike organizer Javier Gonzalez, the man who bragged that "haters got schooled" after a group of polite Arizonans begged him to end the boycott and pitch in to help the state during a recent forum, taking this? Not well, it seems.
As the walls close in and the boycott looks more and more ridiculous -- bigoted California voters passed an "eerily similar" law that met the exact same fate, thankfully killed by courts before it could do any damage to that state's migrant community -- organizers are clawing to maintain relevance.
And they're willing to hide facts to do it.
Witness what happened to Dan Gibson. Gibson is Tucson Weekly's web producer (he also writes a bit for us) and so he shared the news about the upcoming Steve Earle concert on The Sound Strike's Facebok page. He was both friendly and professional but the comment was deleted and he was subsequently banned from posting on Sound Strike's Facebook. Having heard this, I left a comment asking why he was banned for sharing information and was myself banned. When I tweeted this, another local man also asked why we were both banned and was himself banned.
That's right: The Sound Strike will ban you just for asking why a journalist was banned for pointing out their propaganda is inaccurate because the boycott roster includes artists who are playing concerts in the state.
Calls and e-mails to the organization have, of course, not been returned. Like Conor Oberst, they continue to duck interview requests from people who will ask them tough questions.
Is it high-time any reasonable people associated with this organization to sever ties?
When someone needs to hide facts and censor opposition should they maybe reconsider the righteousness of their cause?
Is there a better time to end this thing than now?
Don't ask Sound Strike -- they'll block your ass.
In the meantime, there are plenty of groups opposing the boycott on Facebook, so feel free to share there.
Sound Strike, the movement in which musicians boycott Arizona as a statement of opposition to the state's anti-illegal immigrant law, SB 1070, is still going strong. As we reported in recent months, acts like Maroon 5 and My Chemical Romance, who had concerts booked in the Valley, canceled them as part of the ongoing strike.
But other acts, like Latin rock band Los Lobos, decided to play here anyway. The band initially supported Sound Strike, but their decision to play at Talking Stick Resort on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian reservation on Cinco de Mayo upset a lot of folks. As our colleague Stephen Lemons reported, pro-immigrant human rights organization Coalicion de Derechos Humanos declined the band's offer to have a table set up at the show.
Sound Strike's organizers and supporters seem adamant that the best way to make a difference in Arizona is for artists to skip the state on their tours and release statements about how shitty Arizona's politics are. I think the only way is for them to show some real brass and come here, just like Lady Gaga, Margaret Cho, Los Lobos, and countless other acts have done in spite of the strike. For an organization like Coalicion de Derechos Humanos to decline an invitation to a Los Lobos show in the Valley -- where they could have advocated for immigrant rights, educated people about the evils of SB 1070, and grown their numbers -- shows how divisive and counterproductive Sound Strike can be.
Like many music fans in Arizona, I totally disagree with SB 1070. It's oppressive and tyrannical. It is also not a voter-approved bill. It was pushed and enacted solely by state legislators. If the load of crap that is SB 1070 had been affirmed by we, the people (not wholly represented here by they, the lawmakers), I might think Sound Strike makes a real statement against racism and intolerance here. But as it is, Sound Strike does nothing but punish like-minded music fans, choke off local non-profit venues, and make artists look self-righteous. And while Sound Strike has made some strides (particularly by booking shows to raise money for awareness), it seems like there's been more finger wagging than high-fives going around lately. I think Sound Strike's approach is all wrong, and the strike is becoming a source of contention among people who mostly, when it comes down to it, share the same opposition to oppression.
Those involved with Sound Strike seem to think it's going to have such an impact on our economy that state legislators will take notice and dump 1070. I've got news for them: that's not going to happen. Governor Jan Brewer could probably give two shits about whether or not Maroon 5 will be playing one of our arenas. Half the time, she's working too hard on things like trying to form a coherent sentence.
To the music artists who have joined Sound Strike: There's a better way for you to show your opposition to SB 1070 and raise awareness for immigrant rights. Come here and get on your platform. Stop punting from press releases and make it real.
Take a cue from Lady Gaga and comedian Margaret Cho, both of whom performed in Phoenix last year, despite continually being urged to boycott the state. During her sold-out show at US Airways Center last July, Lady Gaga told the audience, "You really think us dumb fucking pop stars are going to collapse the state economy? I'll tell you what we have to do about SB 1070: We have to be active. I will not cancel my show. I will scream and I will yell."
Comedian Margaret Cho: "I still wanted to come, and I decided it could benefit a good cause."
Cho did one better, donating all the proceeds from her September performance at Comerica Theatre (then Dodge Theatre) to Puente and Tonatierra, two local immigration rights groups. "A lot of people are saying 'Boycott Phoenix,'" Cho said from the stage. "I still wanted to come, and I decided it could benefit a good cause. This country was built by immigrants, for immigrants, and everybody is welcome."
That is the way to truly make a difference -- march fearlessly into a war zone, advocate, and donate to the cause. It has a lot more impact than a band simply scratching Phoenix or Tucson from its tour itinerary and releasing some statement that basically says they're too good to come play here. That's the easy way out. If bands really want to show their opposition to SB 1070, then they must come here, cross the picket line, advocate, and most importantly, put their money where their mouths are. If you don't want to help pump money into Arizona's economy, then donate all the money from your Arizona shows to the non-profit groups here that are also fighting SB 1070. Because as noble as Sound Strike may seem, I don't see it really making a difference. Arizona legislators are not taking notice, because the battle hasn't been brought here. Not enough musicians come here to raise money for pro-immigration groups and rally fans for the cause. Instead, many fans feel alienated -- a feeling that gets more pronounced as Sound Strike appears more elitist and ineffectual.
Sound Strike has received its fair share of criticism, and hasn't taken any of it very well. Salon.com recently published an article positing that the only thing Sound Strike has done is punish Arizona music fans and screw non-profit venues. They also mentioned allegations that Sound Strike founder (and former Rage Against the Machine front man) Zack de la Rocha blocked Arizona musicians and promoters from appearing on the SXSW panel on SB 1070. And former Phoenix New Times music editor Martin Cizmar, who blogged about Sound Strike many times, claims Sound Strike was blocking music journalists -- or anyone who questioned the movement's effectiveness -- from its Facebook page.
Sound Strike project manager Javier Gonzalez vigorously defended Sound Strike in his response to the Salon.com article, mentioning that Sound Strike artists like Ozomatli and Tigres del Norte have played benefit shows to promote activism and voter registration, as well as raise aid for the victims of the Tucson shooting that seriously injured Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Stephen Lemons wrote in New Times' Feathered Bastard blog that the arguments of those who disagreed with the Sound Strike were "pathetic, twaddling attacks."
It's a shame that somehow, it's starting to seem like anyone who disagrees with the alleged effectiveness of Sound Strike is somehow deemed the enemy, or worse, a supporter of SB 1070. That's the same kind of "You're either with us or against us" mentality George W. Bush propagated, when he was trying to justify another oppressive law, the Patriot Act.
Make no mistake: the majority of music fans in Arizona, especially those who'd buy tickets to see bands like Los Lobos or My Chemical Romance, are not supporters of SB 1070. So rather than make them feel like they're being robbed of concerts because our legislators suck, more bands need to come and mobilize fans in a real grass roots movement that could make a real difference.
The article from Salon last month...
On paper, the mission of Sound Strike seems like an admirable attempt by musicians to boycott Arizona's passage of the SB 1070 bill. After all, the tourism industry of the state has already seen million-dollar losses as conventions move elsewhere in opposition to the anti-immigration law. Sound Strike's artists appear to be operating under the same line of defense: By refusing to play in-state venues, they are dedicated to "raising awareness and opposition to the predatory and punitive treatment of immigrants in Arizona."
But according to a vocal group of anti-legislation sympathizers in Arizona's music industry, Sound Strike has done nothing but hurt the community it is theoretically trying to help. By canceling shows, these bands have left non-profit venues in a lurch. By not showing up, these state citizens argue, the musicians involved in Sound Strike missed an opportunity to rally young voters against the bill in the first place.
In addition, there have been claims that Sound Strike founder (and Rage Against the Machine frontman) Zack de la Rocha blocked local Arizona music organizers from participating in its SXSW panel about the bill and, according to the Phoenix New Times, have policed their Facebook page for any questioning of their methods. Apparently, the writing is on the wall: if your business is in Arizona, you are blacklisted from some of today's biggest touring artists.
From an open letter to the organization from the Rialto Theatre, a non-profit organization and live music venue in Tucson:
Zack De La Rocha’s “Sound Strike” effort, which has been joined by a slew of artists, from Sonic Youth to Kanye West, has generated a lot of headlines, but the official stance seems to be nothing more nuanced than “Boycott Arizona and sign a petition to repeal SB 1070.” With all due respect, we feel that this effort tends towards feel-good posturing for those that have the luxury of skipping a couple shows on a given tour that does nothing to address the very real problem that confronts all Hispanic-appearing people in our state. Moreover, this boycott harms the very people that are doing the most to fight the law – promoters, venues, non-profits, motivated fans – within the state of Arizona.
We spoke to Curtis McCrary, general manager of the Rialto Theater, to discuss how the boycott has effected not only the music industry in Arizona, but its electoral process as well.
What has been the effect of Sound Strike on your community?
All of this started in April of 2010, when Arizona State legislature passed the SB 1070 law: the "Show Me Your Papers" bill, which was obviously horrible and very controversial. Shortly after it was passed by [Arizona Governor] Jan Brewer, I got a call from the management of Cypress Hill wanting to cancel their show at our theater on May 21 because of the legislature. I wrote an impassioned plea to their people: that boycotting wasn't the right approach, that doing the show would give them a platform to protest the law, we would donate money from the show to any groups they wanted, and we would ask that they donate part of their fee as well. We wanted to call a press conference and express alongside of them our opposition to the bill. We all opposed the law, we thought it was terrible for the state. And instead we got punished. They canceled the show anyway.
A month after that, the Sound Strike boycott was announced. They put out a list of artists that wouldn't play in our state, and Cypress Hill was one of them. We started losing shows.
Can you give me some examples?
Steve Earle. Rodrigo y Gabriela was a confirmed show, we were working on a Joan Baez show at another venue, and she withdrew before she confirmed. Gogol Bordello has played here three or four times, and they had a show we working on for the fall that never happened because they joined the boycott.
And you think this boycott is happening specifically in Arizona not just because of the publicity around the state, but for financial reasons as well?
As a talent-buyer for an Arizona venue, what gets to me is -- yes, Arizona put out a horrible piece of legislation. But as everyone knows, it's now been joined by the federal courts and the Ninth Circuit ruling. But it seems to me that Arizona is an easy state to boycott, because we only have two major markets: Phoenix and Tucson. It's just not a very important place for a lot of these mid-size artists that are on that Sound Strike list, and they can afford to give up gigs here to be part of this boycott.
What seemed obvious to me for quite a while is that this boycott isn't effective because it punishes us as a non-profit, it punishes the fans that don't get to see them, but it has no effect on the larger tourism industry or big business in the state. The boycott of the convention and tourism business in Arizona is costing millions of dollars of losses, and that is quantifiable. But I'm sure if Jan Brewer or [Arizona State Senator] Russell Pearce had even heard of Sound Strike, they'd be happy these artists who oppose their legislation are staying away and not coming here to oppose them with the platform afforded to musicians.
The state of Texas also has really messed up immigration laws, but no one is going to boycott Texas, because it is too important to them financially to play in San Antonio, Dallas, Austin and Houston. No one is going to stop playing in Los Angeles either, despite their drafting of a similar bill.
And the really ironic thing to me is that LiveNation, the biggest corporate music promoter in the world, put on a concert by Rage Against the Machine and other groups participating in the boycott in Los Angeles. We were telling these artists before the 2010 election, "Come here, help register voters, we need you." If they had come and helped register young people, Hispanic people with their message during that critical election, they could have made a difference. But they didn't do that. They held their rally and event in Los Angeles in conjunction with a giant corporation that has more stake in keeping tourism alive here -- that actually is more in line with working to help Arizona's lawmakers -- than opposing them.
Our state Attorney General is Tom Horne, a rabid right-winger (and the main supporter of a bill to ban ethnic studies in Arizona schools). He won by about 4 percentage points. So if these bands could have come and helped us get the word out about voting, had hit those youth demographics and helped get 5,000 to 10,000 extra votes, things might have turned out much differently for our state.
Drew Grant is a staff writer for Salon. Follow her on Twitter at @videodrew. More: Drew Grant
Now I'm craving a burrito.
2 oz blended whiskey
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp powdered sugar
1/2 slice lemon
Shake blended whiskey, juice of lemon, and powdered sugar with ice and strain into a whiskey sour glass. Decorate with the half-slice of lemon, top with the cherry, and serve.
Department of Justice officials made a surprise appearance at a community forum in Birmingham, Ala. on Thursday evening, encouraging residents to report civil rights violations in the wake of the state's harsh new immigration law.
The law, H.B. 56, requires police and some government officials to demand proof of legal status if they have "reasonable suspicion" a person may be in the country illegally. So far, it has driven many undocumented immigrants and Latino residents out of the state.
Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, and a handful of department staffers and attorneys attended the forum, which was hosted by the local branch of the NAACP and held at Glen Iris Elementary School. Perez and panelists from local immigrant advocacy groups sat at a table at the school, several feet from a banner that said "Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month," and listened as men and women in the room voiced their fears about the law.
Some immigrants said they were unsure how to get to work, because renewing their license plates would now require them to show immigration papers, and any traffic stop could now lead to an officer detecting them as undocumented. Others said they feared sending their children to school, now that public schools might ask their children about their legal status. Some asked whether they should flee the state, leaving their jobs and homes behind.One man questioned why Alabama legislators would pass such a law, wondering aloud whether it meant Latinos and other immigrants are unwelcome in the state.
"Can anyone tell me the motives behind this law?" he said, according to someone in the room. "We like it here, and we just don't understand why they don't like us."
For the most part, DOJ officials simply listened, taking notes on the concerns raised. They stuck around after the meeting to talk to community members directly, and plan to meet with more on Friday.
The DOJ has made attempts to block the law, which was adopted in the wake of Arizona's controversial immigration law S.B. 1070. But the Alabama law is even harsher: it requires people to prove legal status during virtually all interactions with the government.
"The atmosphere has just been so hostile," Helen Rivas, a community organizer in Birmingham and 30-year Alabama resident, told HuffPost after the forum. "The people who want people gone have done such a good job at poisoning the atmosphere and demonizing [immigrants]. It's really scary."
The DOJ challenged the laws in Arizona and Alabama, successfully blocking most portions of the Arizona law before it was implemented. But it was less successful in blocking the Alabama law. U.S. District Judge Sharon Blackburn ruled on Sept. 28 that most portions of the law could go into effect, despite arguments from the Justice Department that the law preempted federal immigration authority and could lead to civil rights violations.
The Justice Department appealed the decision last week, leaving it in the hands of a higher court.
In the meantime, DOJ officials seem to be trying to assure immigrants and residents of Alabama that their concerns are being heard and addressed.
On Thursday, the department announced a toll-free phone number and email address for people who live in Alabama to report abuses of the law and ask questions. (To reach the Justice Department, call 855-353-1810 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
DOJ officials and community leaders in Alabama will meet on Friday with a 19-year-old undocumented immigrant named Victor Palafox, who has been living in Birmingham for 14 years.
Palafox is a founder of Alabama Dreamers for the Future, a group of young people pushing for immigration reform. He spoke to Perez and other justice department officials after the forum, telling them stories of men and women he has met who have already been affected by the law.
"Here in Alabama, the situation is very dire," he told HuffPost after the forum. "Effects are very visible. People are leaving left and right."
Rivas said the organizations she works with, Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice and Latinos Unidas de Alabama, are bombarded with calls from immigrants who are unsure how they should respond to the law. She said it's difficult to tell them because it's still unclear: until the appeals court makes its decision, no one knows whether the law will remain in place.
Still, she said the Justice Department's involvement is a positive step.
"I never thought I'd be hanging out with the FBI and the Department of Justice so much, but they're on our side," Rivas said.
Were they just handing them out before?Some immigrants said they were unsure how to get to work, because renewing their license plates would now require them to show immigration papers
Many immigrants have obtained ID's and that would have been sufficient. Now they are requiring immigration papers.
Pearce was recalled. For those who don't know he's the guy who introduced SB1070. It's also worth noting that activist rager Zack de la Rocha could have helped but he is not so good at activism anymore. His boycott aka SoundStrike was a complete and utter failure but at least he rocked out in L.A. for some fans a few times.
Pearce was not recalled because of his sponsorship of 1070 though. He was recalled because he's a loudmouthed ass who liked to accept gifts from lobbyists. His replacement is also an inbred fascist.
Critics, however, began to express disillusionment with Pearce's increasing hard-line stance, and some supporters began to feel conflicted when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began advocating a more humane and moderate approach to the immigration issue.
In Lewis, they would get a man who like Pearce is White, conservative and Mormon, but who repeatedly contrasted himself to Pearce by saying his vision of leadership is to bring all sides together to find solutions, rather than ruling by fiat.
On virtually every other issue, Pearce and Lewis agreed, and in their only debate last month, they echoed each other's positions and used each other's examples to illustrate their points.
Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/community/m...#ixzz1dEIVDdP7
I posted something similar in the "Comments" thread, but I'll say it here, too: I'll take small victories. As wrong headed and offensive as the Mormon Church was on Prop. 8, I'm happy that they're advocating sanity and decency on immigration related issues, and I'm relieved that people like Pearce are getting marginalized as a result.
Department of Justice criminal investigation is giving a live press conference as we speak on Sheriff Joe and the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office. The findings are disturbing.
Perez: Expert said MCSO's conduct was most egregious conduct he had ever seen - EVER.
Perez: MCSO has bred a culture of disregard for the constitution. MCSO must comply w the laws.
Perez: MCSO has failed to investigate a large # of sex crimes. We'll be looking into those cases
UNCONSTITUTIONAL POLICING, RACIAL PROFILING AND UNLAWFUL RETALIATION AGAINST THOSE WHO CRITICIZE AND THEY ROUTINELY PUNISH MEXICANS WHO DO NOT UNDERSTAND ENGLISH. MCSO IS ON NOTICE FOR USE OF EXC...ESSIVE FORCE, FAILURE TO PROVIDE POLICING SERVICES IN LATINO COMMUNITIES, AND FAILURE TO INVESTIGATE SEXUAL ASSAULTS. MCSO IS BROKEN AND THE PROBLEMS ARE DEEPLY ROOTED all according to federal findings.
Perez DOJ Re Maricopa County: Our expert found Latino drivers are 4 to 9 times more likely to be stopped than others.
Sorry for the caps, I was copying and pasting a bit. That's all from the DOJ spokeperson.