Monday, May 24, 2010

Thoughts On The Arizona Immigration Law

I’ve found watching liberals getting so self-righteously spun up over the Arizona immigration law to be highly amusing political theater. Seeing them falling all over themselves to condemn Arizona and calling for boycotts of the state has been a welcome diversion from other, more serious things, going on in my life.

When you ask those who are so snobbishly offended if they’ve actually read the law, most openly admit they haven’t, but say all they know is that it’s racist and morally wrong. What’s funnier is watching them stammer pompously when you tell them all Arizona did was basically take the existing federal immigration law — the one the Obama administration has refused to enforce until now — and change the words “United States of America,” to “State of Arizona.

In spite of all the negative rhetoric, I think passing that law finally put heavy enough pressure on the Obama administration to act, and that’s why it sent troops to Arizona to restore order. 

Recently, the Cities of Seattle and Tacoma passed resolutions condemning Arizona, much like the City of Los Angeles had. I came across a copy of an interesting letter in response to that resolution sent by Gary Pierce, a member of the Arizona Corporation Commission, to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa.

Mr. Pierce cites language in the Los Angeles resolution, which reads in part, “While we recognize that as neighbors, we share resources and ties with the State of Arizona that may be difficult to sever, our goal is not to hurt the local economy of Los Angeles, but to impact the economy of Arizona. Our intent is to use our dollars — or the withholding of our dollars — to send a message.”

Mr. Pierce replied, “I received your message; please receive mine. As a state-wide elected member of the Arizona Corporation Commission overseeing Arizona’s electric and water utilities, I too am keenly aware of the ‘resources and ties’ we share with the City of Los Angeles. In fact, approximately twenty five percent of the electricity consumed in Los Angeles is generated by power plants in Arizona.

“If an economic boycott is truly what you desire, I will be happy to encourage Arizona utilities to renegotiate your power agreements so Los Angeles no longer receives any power from Arizona-based generation. If however, you find that the City Council lacks the strength of its convictions to turn off the lights in Los Angeles and boycott Arizona power, please reconsider the wisdom of attempting to harm Arizona’s economy.”

Personally, I find these actions pretentiously arrogant, especially considering these folks don’t personally live with the drug-related violence many Arizonans experience on a daily basis. Opponents should have been condeming the federal government for refusing to enforce the existing immigration law, not the state for protecting its citizens. Perhaps the more vocal of them should have spent a few weeks getting some up close and personal experience with that brand of violence before invoking typical liberal knee-jerk political condemnation from afar. I’m willing to bet the first time they actually came face-to-face with it, they’d quickly rethink their self-important contempt.

Here are a couple of videos from a TV station in Atlanta that has taken an active interest in this issue. They may surprise you. See them here and here.

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