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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

National boycott planned for Arizona – speak with your dollars!

Just say NO to Arizona
Boycott HB 1070

It did not take an effort on the part of the National Council of La Raza to call for a boycott of Arizona for the first protests with the buck to start.  However, the influential organization, along with labor groups and others, has been instrumental in letting the citizens know there is a price to discrimination.

"No conferences. No travel," said Janet Murguía, president of the NCLR, the nation's largest Hispanic civil rights group. "We are looking at major events with big visibility, and we're asking all people to consider whether any purchase of goods from the state would further this unjust law."

Janet Murguía, picture from Washington Post

In addition to the boycotts urged by the NCLR, there may be a national walkout throughout the United States in the planning.  We will keep you posted on news.

Not everyone in Arizona is in agreement with HB 1070 which requires law enforcement to investigate any suspected undocumented person to see if they are in the country “without papers”.  The law was vetoed when it came up for signature by the prior governor of Arizona who was a Democrat.  It took a Republican Governor, Jan Brewer, to sign the hate based legislation. 

The problem with the law, amongst other issues, is it does not define what an “illegal alien” looks like.  That leaves some police departments in the un-happy position, and other police departments Like “Little Joe” Arpaio’s in the happy position, of determining for themselves what an undocumented resident looks like.  Since most undocumented workers are Latino, it mandates racial profiling and the obliteration of probable cause for Hispanics during police investigation.

Even though plenty of innocent persons will be hurt by a boycott, it sends a message to Arizona.  There is a price to hating your brother.  The National Council of La Raza NCLR is looking for large events to send the message.  According to an article in the Washington Post.

“Supporters of the NCLR have agreed to pull the Puerto Rican Day festival's regional meeting out of Phoenix, and the National Urban League struck the city from a short-list of places to host its 2012 conference.” 

Murguía has requested Major League Baseball cancel the 2011 All-Star Game in Phoenix.  'She is joined by U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), according to the Hudson Reporter.

However, every single one of us can help send the message.  Every unspent dollar counts.  No travel.  No purchasing of products made in Arizona.  No conferences.  Perhaps you can even take the scenic route if your travel plans would normally lead you through Arizona on your way to greener pastures.  Best, no financial support of any kind!

The move will likely strike terror in the hearts of Republicans who supported the hate law.  The Republican Party is the party which supports business interests over that of labor and minorities.  It is also critical we remember which party passed this ugly law in the up-coming elections!

We must also be vigilant against illegal violations of one’s civil rights.  The federal government has an information page for those who think their rights have been violated.   While Arizona sanctions State mandated civil rights violations, clear acts of hate may be prosecuted by the federal government.

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