Thursday, October 21, 2010

"Papers, please, unless you're Canadian"

By Mustang Bobby.

Florida is coming up with its own version of the Arizona immigration law, and according to this story by Elsie Foley in the Washington Independent, it basically gives white people a free pass.
The bill includes a provision allowing Canadians and Western Europeans to be “presumed to be legally in the United States,” even though other non-citizens must carry papers. Florida’s bill, which was drafted by Rep. William Snyder (R), has support from Rick Scott, the Republican candidate for governor. Although proponents of the legislation argue it would not lead to racial profiling, the provision on Canadians and Western Europeans — most of whom are white non-Latinos — brings up new concerns for Latino groups. (The Miami New Times, which originally pointed out the provision, has a full copy of the draft bill.)

Latino and immigrant rights groups have fervently opposed the bill, which would mimic Arizona’s SB 1070 by requiring police to check legal status on anyone they “reasonable suspicions” of being in the country illegally if the police have already stopped them. The provision would allow them to assume legal status if the person had a Canadian passport or a “passport from any ‘visa waiver country’” — which are primarily located in Western Europe. “That language makes it clear that police are targeting only a specific minority,” Susana Barciela, policy director at the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center, told the Miami New Times.

Mr. Snyder also made it quite clear that he's exempting Canadians because they're vital to the tourist industry; a lot of them spend their winters here, he noted, and he wants to be "sensitive" to them.  (Since when have conservatives ever given a rat's ass about being "sensitive"?)

Adam Serwer
says that the goal of the bill is to reduce the Latino population in Florida.  Actually, that would be the non-Cuban Latino population, since Cubans already get the Priority Access treatment thanks to the current law that lets them in without going through all the bother if they can make it to dry land in Key Biscayne.

I also agree with Mr. Serwer: at least this bill does away with all the pretense about trying to write an immigration law that doesn't target people who look like they might be an "illegal immigrant."

(Cross-posted from Bark Bark Woof Woof.)


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  • Snyder is my Representative and I've had some correspondence with him regarding his joyful embrace of Arizona's ethnic cleansing bill. It ended badly as you might presume.

    Foreign tourism has declined so much in this district since the hysteria began that I'm sure he really doesn't care about scaring off the few remaining Canadians and Europeans willing to put up with the fingerprinting and proctological examinations required these days.

    Even the tone deaf find it easy to notice that the tenor of conversation in this area is very hostile to "non-whites" and there's desperate concern and even grief about the prospect of a non-white majority in a country that only a generation or two ago was just as concerned about their Irish, Catholic, Jewish, German, etc. immigrant ancestors. This is Florida, the last state to give up de facto slavery. I was an adult before I was allowed to get a room in most local hotels and many still hate the ACLU and the liberal establishment for pushing such decency on them.

    The effect of Hispanic immigrants here ( some of whom have been here a long time) has been to bring in new business, new customers, new cuisine along with cheaper fruits and vegetables no one else will pick. Our agricultural industry would collapse without them and we'd have to start buying such things directly from Mexico, but to expect a rational approach to controlling immigration through the fog of emotionally charged propaganda and native racism is impossible. I suspect the bill will pass easily.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 9:33 AM  

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