This paper is based on the article “Mexican president condemns Arizona immigrant law”, appearing in the Houston chronicles of April 26, 2010. The article was written on a reaction speech by President Felipe Calderon on the Arizona immigrant law. The President and other political leaders from Mexico view the law as being discriminatory and targeted against immigrants from Latin America. In the speech, Calderon seeks to protect the rights and interests of Mexican immigrants living in Arizona. The law which is tentatively set to take root in July gives the police powers to question and arrest anyone suspected to be an illegal immigrant in Arizona.
Arizona immigrant law has become a source disagreement between Mexican and Arizona’s leaders. Leaders opposed to the law describe it as a decision fixed hurriedly without proper consultations. Political Leaders from Arizona justify the law, pointing out how it will protect the state against crimes, mostly committed by illegal immigrants. Calderon and Mexican leaders have proposed imposing economic sanctions on Arizona to protest against the law. Olson notes in the article that political leaders in Mexico have agreed to revenge against the law by; “boycotting trade with Arizona as well as the Arizona-Sonora commission meetings”.
Summary of the Article
In his speech to react against the Arizona immigrant law, President Felipe Calderon pointed out that the law is unfair to millions of Mexican citizens who live in the US. Arizona immigrant law according to state officials and its architects is meant to combat the escalating crime rates in Arizona, reportedly committed by illegitimate immigrants. They have further argued that the law is in line with the former US-Mexico immigration law that was meant to deal with the problem of drug trafficking.
In protesting against the law, the Mexican government plans to skip “the Sonora -Arizona commission meeting” scheduled for June this year (Olson). The law which takes root in august empowers the police to question and arrest suspected illegal immigrants. The police force according to the provisions in the law can be sued for failing to perform its duties in accordance with the law. Besides, the law requires the police force to arrest laborers found to be in the US illegitimately.
The law faces opposition from different leaders including the US chief of organization. Jose Miguel, the chief of organizations points out in the article that the bill is unfair particularly to immigrants from Latin America. President Filipe Calderon indicated that the Arizona immigration law would spoil both political and trade links between Mexico and Arizona. Church and political leaders in Mexico also reacted against the law and urged the president to take a tough action against efforts towards the implementation of the law. The legislators support trade boycott with Arizona and faulted the federal government for not being keen on the law.
The trade and transport embargo which Mexico plans to slap on Arizona will definitely have a negative impact on Arizona’s economy. Mexico provides a large market to Arizona’s products. The “US trade international report indicates that Arizona exported goods worthy $ 4.5 billion to Mexico in 2009” (Olson). This are high trade volumes which Arizona state stands to loose in case the law takes root as scheduled in July. Besides, Mexican immigrants form the bulk of Arizona’s manual work force. Blocking entry of these immigrants into Arizona would deny the state these resources. Officials in Arizona indicate that the state provides asylum to more than “460, 000 illegal immigrants” who contribute to the high criminal acts in the state (Olson).
President Obama has also criticized the Arizona immigrant law, terming it injudicious. President Calderon indicated that he will be seeking audience with president Obama to chat the way forward about the law. Mexican leaders have heaped praise to president Obama’s administration for acknowledging that the drug abuse and trafficking is the main problem in the US and not necessarily the immigrants.
Evaluation of the article
The Arizona immigrant law clearly serves the selfish interests of the state. The state benefits heavily from immigrants in terms of labor, especially the manual labor which the aliens are not ready to take up. Rather than embrace these people and provide them with a fair working environment, the state has formulated laws that are meant to discriminate against the immigrants. Growth in crime rates is a growing concern world over as a result of globalization and poverty.
Drug as a problem can not be wholly linked to the illegal immigrants from Latin America or from any other part of the world. Drug trafficking cartels are implemented through a well established network that involves corrupt government officials. It is not possible for drug traffickers to succeed in their business without at least collaborating with officials who are in charge of manning the borders. With advances in technology, several technological detection devices have been developed for this purpose. For the fact that trafficking cartels still manage to penetrate through these barriers means there is collaboration.
Problems associated with immigration have been a common growing concern especially for developed nations. There has been a growing trend for citizens fro m poor nations rushing to developed nations to look for better opportunity. Globalization and innovation has increased the challenges by virtually opening up boundaries to world nations. Countries have lost the ability to maintain privacy within their borders as the flow of information has become internet based. These problems should be fought by all nations but in a fair and humanitarian manner.
Arizona’s leaders should approach the issue by weighing the impact that the law will have on its own economy and aim at treating the immigrants in a human way. Considering the planned actions by Mexico in revenge against the law, Arizona State is bound to suffer economically. Mexico provides the bulk of its foreign market, imposing trade barriers to goods from Arizona translates to loss of this important market. As neighboring states, it is important for them to maintain a cordial relationship and collaborate in fighting common problems.
A Personal Reflection on the Article
The article adds a voice of reason to the honest pleas that the Mexican leaders are pointing out in the Arizona immigrant law. The law is unfair and can be interpreted as an effort to champion xenophobic interests and racism. Crime increase should not be linked to illegal immigrants but the changes in the social and technological aspects of the world. Governments should rather device methods of accommodating and solving these problems from a humanitarian point of view rather than set up discriminatory laws to bar free movement between nation or state borders.
Implementing the revenge plan set out by Mexico; will hurt Arizona’s economy considering the big export volumes that Arizona sends out to Mexico every year. The revenge plan is also bound to create tension between the relations of the two states. The law has also attracted reactions from leaders from other nations and states, meaning that should Arizona go ahead and implement the law, then the international community will have to step in to sort the issue.
It is important that the modern world is faced with a lot of problems arising not only from immigration but largely from innovation and globalization. We face a lot of social and economic problems emanating our own attempt to modify the environment to make it a better place to live. World economic problems such as those resulting from global warming are as a result of the innovations that man has developed to make life comfortable but in the process created further problems. We should therefore be more creative in seeking solutions that will be fair to all of us without discriminating against any group based on any criteria.
Legislations are important in taming human behavior and protecting the innocent and weak against unfair and irresponsible aggression. Legislation processes should be widely consultative in order to accommodate as many views as possible. Issues of illegal immigrants have become a growing concern for developed nations. Developed nations view immigrants from developing nations as a threat to internal peace and job security for their citizens. It is worthy noting however such immigrants provide cheap manual labor for jobs which natives in developed nations despise.
A mutual co-operation between Mexico and Arizona benefits both parties and should be maintained at all costs. Arizona’s leaders should seek just ways of dealing with the problem of illegal immigrants, rather proposed discriminatory law. The law is bound to hurt the relations between the two states and this will consequently affect the economies of the two nations.
Olson, Alexandra. “Mexican President Condemns Arizona Immigrant Law.” Houston Chronicles. 2010. Web.