LatinaLista — In Arizona, anti-immigrant feelings run higher there than in any other border state.
It’s gotten to the point where the local sheriff has installed a hotline for people to report suspected illegal immigrants.
There’s nothing wrong with keeping a community safe but there’s something inherently wrong about feeding into mass hysteria under the guise of keeping law and order.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has a reputation for being tough. In fact, he wants to live up to that reputation so much, it would seem, that he has made one of his official objectives to get tough on illegal immigration.
The Illegal immigrant hotline is just one aspect of the Sheriff’s strategy. Visit the Sheriff’s homepage and you’ll find the latest stats of illegal immigrant apprehensions and even mugshots of people his men have arrested for “conspiracy to commit human smuggling.”
This week, illegal immigration is the Sheriff’s “Crime of the Week.”
So far, since the hotline was installed last Friday, the Sheriff says that his office has received 300 tips. He claims that his office won’t go and investigate unless there is probable cause to do so.
The advocates for the undocumented want the Sheriff to disconnect the hotline. He won’t.
So they plan on setting up a hotline of their own for people to call who have been unjustly targeted.
And that is what should happen, but also the Sheriff’s hotline should stay up.
It would be an interesting “experiment” to see how the public perceives the so-called illegal immigrant and how often they think they see one. It could also prove to be a good tool in measuring the hysteria that is sweeping the country.
The hotline began last Friday and has received about 300 messages, which include tips about family and friends, employment, day laborers, drop houses and crank calls.
That anyone would report their own family members is a sad situation that warrants greater vigilance and documentation as to what these kinds of targeted laws are compelling people to do.
What kinds of laws intimidate people to do what is legal, but not what is morally right?