Alabama immigration law pulls state deeper down national hole of shame

Alabama immigration law pulls state deeper down national hole of shame

LatinaLista -- A Sunday editorial cartoon in the Mobile Press-Register had the title "What can brown do for you?" It was in reference to the extremely harsh immigration law passed in Alabama to rid the state of undocumented immigrants. As of now, it stands as the most punitive law in the country.

The short blog post accompanying the cartoon ended with the sentence: Congratulations, Alabama. Even when we're first we're last.

Yet, the trouble with Alabama's new immigration law is that it has the potential to make a lot more than just Alabama residents last.

Ever since the federal judge allowed the state to start enforcing parts of the law, Latino immigrants have been laying low.

News outlets have reported that children of undocumented immigrants are being kept home from school in record numbers. Over 2,000 Latino children didn't show up for school on Monday.

Pregnant women are reported to be too afraid to go to the hospital and crime victims now don't want to risk coming forward in fear of having the tables turned on them and they be labeled the criminal.

And then there's the issue of the farm crops.

The majority of the agricultural workforce in Alabama, like elsewhere, are Latinos. Due to the law, farmers are reporting that both legal and undocumented immigrants aren't showing up for work because of the new law.

As a result, farmers are losing hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost crops. Recently, a group of Alabama farmers met with the state legislator who authored the bill and the politician declared he would make no changes to the law though the farmers told him they were losing their crops because they couldn't find workers to replace the immigrants.

His response was to increase the wages and more people would show up.

One tomato farmer, by the name of Chad Smith, put it into perspective:

"It ain't about the money, it's about the work physically. If a person can't do the work, they can't do it no matter how much you pay them," Smith said.

To say farmers are mad is an understatement. Today, a group traveled to Washington to speak to congressmen about how this law is not only jeopardizing their livelihoods but is threatening to damage the state's economy.

And yet, these politicians wouldn't change a thing.

It doesn't matter to them that perfectly good food is rotting away. Or that food prices will go up for everyone as a result of this destruction which will impact the nation's food supply.

If any new law should be enacted, it should be a law that jails shortsighted, bigoted politicians for endangering the nation's food security because of an unhealthy hatred/fear of immigrants, who are powerless to defend themselves but have spent every working minute of their lives contributing to the economy of this country.

Click to add a comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply


More in Immigration


China, India overtake Mexico as top source of immigrants to the U.S.

Latina ListaMay 22, 2015

HBO’s Vice takes in-depth look at Alabama after harsh 2011 anti-immigrant bill

Latina ListaApril 24, 2015

Breaking News: White House says today’s court ruling doesn’t affect current DACA program

Latina ListaFebruary 17, 2015

New bilingual online platform helps DREAMers and other immigrants navigate, complete and file immigration paperwork

Latina ListaFebruary 10, 2015

Deporting parents of US citizen children provides window to shaky national future

Latina ListaJanuary 12, 2015
Immigrants Rally To Thank Obama

Separate polls show Obama’s base approve his Executive Action, leaving critics red

Latina ListaNovember 24, 2014

New Pew report shows decline of undocumented immigration in 14 states, while 7 saw a rise

Latina ListaNovember 18, 2014

DREAMer activist on path to lead the way in overcoming injustice

Latina ListaNovember 17, 2014

New Pew study finds undocumented population no longer growing, but settling in as Americans

Latina ListaSeptember 3, 2014