Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dream Walkers Confront Arpaio in the Twilight Zone

by Pa Rock
Citizen Journalist

Downtown Phoenix has played host to some world class street theatre since the passage of the racist SB 1070 a few weeks ago. There was a performance this afternoon, however, on the 19th floor of the Wells Fargo Building that was undoubtedly more surreal than anything to ever emerge from the mind of Twilight Zone creator Rod Serling.

The action took place at Sheriff Arpaio's plush headquarters. Four very clean-cut and polite college students presented themselves to the sheriff as exactly what they were: illegal aliens. And tough old Joe's response? He hugged them and chatted amiably while a flotilla of press looked on. Ooh-wee-ooh!

The four - Gaby Pacheco, Carlos Roa, Juan Rodriguez, and Felipe Matos - are students at Miami-Dade County Community College in Florida. Each of the four was brought to the United States illegally when they were too young to have any say in the matter. As an example, Felipe Matos is a native of Brazil. He said that he has achieved honors in college, but he cannot get a driver's license or work legally in this country because of his non-legal status.

They are now walking across the nation in an effort called "The Trail of Dreams" to support the American Dream Act - proposed federal legislation that would provide conditional resident status to students "of good moral character." To qualify for that proposed program, students would have to have arrived in the United States before the age of sixteen, graduated from high school or earned a GED, and have lived in this country a minimum of five consecutive years.

Our esteemed sheriff, who is equipped with a good sense of public relations - when he chooses to exercise it, passed on the opportunity to arrest these foreign desperadoes, something that will be mandated by law when the destructive force of SB 1070 is loosed on the state next month. Instead of an indeterminate stay in the hell that is tent city followed by a bus ride to the border, it was hugs all around!

A little humanity suits you, Joe. Wear it proudly.

1 comment:

Xobekim said...

One of the reasons that S.B. 1070 fails is that it makes law enforcement engage in guesswork. That leads to a problem called selective enforcement, which tends to be arbitrary and capricious.

Has Arpaio just made the point? I think so.