Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pass Laws Come To Arizona

For the last couple of years or so I have been readying myself for a long adventurous motorbike ride through the US southwest.

I got the idea a few years ago when I drove across the US from New York via Arizona and up through Nevada to Oregon.

Arizona captured my riding imagination. I wanted to escape the cage (car) and ride free through what is one of the most beautiful states in the US.

I have fond memories of long stretches of road and hot sands that bathe majestic cacti alongside the greatest Canyon this side of the Fish River Canyon in Namibia.

Sadly, I will have to scratch Arizona off my riding plans for June/July this year.

You see Arizona has just passed a law called the "Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhood Act" (SB1070).

Ostensibly this law allows the police to stop and arrest anyone they suspect of being an illegal immigrant.

Day workers are particularly singled out making it a crime to look for work on the streets.

Bullsh*t aside, this law means brown folk who look Mexican/'Hispanic' and, of course, Muslim will be racially profiled.

Defenders on the right will be quick to point out that this law is not aimed at legal citizens of any color.


Anyone even remotely familiar with race politics in the US knows that this law is not seeking to root our illegal immigrants from Canada or France for that matter.

White folk need not stress. Ride Arizona all you want.

This law is aimed at brown folk. They even built a wall between Arizona and Mexico to keep out brown folk.

If this law reminds you of the Influx Control laws of apartheid then you are on the right track.

Remember the "Pass Laws"?

Black folk were terrorized to prove their belonging at a drop of a suspicious hat.

Influx control was oppressive and not aimed at 'safety and order'. That pretense under apartheid was not even postured.

In Arizona and now Utah too, the pretense of 'safety and order' is meant to dispel the real suspicion that the law is about white safety (privilege) and white order (and all that this implies).

These same impulses were directed at Japanese/Asian-Americans after Pearl Harbor. Japanese Americans, many of them US citizens, were rounded up, stripped of their assets, and put into what amounted to nothing more than concentration camps.

These law abiding folk were dehumanized!

Where will it all end?

Will President Obama step in and have his party propose federal legislation that would declare the Arizona law null and void?


Will other right-minded Americans recall the manner that the Nazis forced Jews to wear the Star of David as part of their 'safety and order campaigns?

I am still gonna ride the US this summer. But I will give Arizona, and most of the states south of the Mason Dixon line, a big miss.

It will be safer for my brown Muslim ass.


See my good friend Dade Cariaga's excellent post on the subject entitled "No enemies on the Right".

See also Terrorizing Immigrants by Stephen Lendman; Arizona the Hate State by Mary Shaw and; Rise in Unity to Resist Arizona’s Racist Law! by Dennis Rahkonen.

Route 66 Image Credit
Whites Only Image Credit


Dade said...

Hear, hear!

The new Arizona law is yet another desperate flailing of the diminishing white majority. That majority is losing its predominance. It's inevitable and irreversible.

Unfortunately, flare ups of racism and pseudo-nativism are symptoms of the change in demographics.

Gonna pass through Oregon on your ride, Ridwan? If so, let me know...

Eugene said...

Arizona's economy is struggling, and they are outlawing a large section of folk whom their economy depends on. Thus, the Mexican government and so many other organizations in the U.S. are boycotting Arizona. Looks like you are on it as well.

I see more and more steps towards a new form of Nazification hitting this nation. Heck! The Nazi's got their best ideas of genocide and eugenics from the United States AND South Africa as well as the Armenian Genocide by the Turks.

GiGi - The Shy Giraffe said...

*one of this thing is not like the other.. one of this thing is not the same...*

sesame street tune running in my head as i read this post =:O(

ahhh ridwan, hope you have a blast riding that bike come this summer.

stay well my brother =;o)

Ridwan said...

Dade I think you are absolutely right. The ancient proverb "Those whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad," applies to the ideo-psychology of whiteness.

We witnessed some of the losing the plot and power abuse of whiteness with the murder and burial of AWB leader Terre'Blance just recently.

Some of the leftover whiteness took to calling black folk (reporters) at the funeral baboons and monkeys.

For a least a few days the hive (what is left of it) was a buzzing with pseudo-visions of white return and revivalism.

Arizona and Utah strike me to be on that path to implosion (well the whole whiteness dominance myth in the US and elsewhere).

In France Sarkozy wants to ban the Burka/veils in what is really an attack on the others that are so visible all over Europe.

We want order and Frenchness is his argument.

The same nonsense argument filters through Arizona/Utah.

It won't work. It did not here in South Africa.

The pass laws are but a painful memory of a past millions stood up to destroy.

It is like Malcolm X said, "Truth is on the side of the oppressed."

I will definitely hola your way when I hit PDX brother.

Can't wait to catch up in person.

Peace to you.


Ridwan said...

I hear you Eugene! Arizona is no place to be supporting in this time.

I know folks in Phoenix and was excited about visiting but hell not under these circumstances.

But like you say, it is all over the US. And we can add Europe.

Minarets are banned in Nordic and other European countries. The veil. The call to prayer, even.

And none of them claim to be anti-Muslim.

It's about integrating is the noise from the bigots who carry sell outs like Ayaan Hirsi Ali their witness.

How can the US boast of being the beacon of democracy when bigot legislation like this passes?

And where is Obama?

What about his reforms of immigration laws?

It is a mess. We have traveled far but not nearly far enough.

The struggle is far from over hey.

Trust you are well my brother.

Peace to you.


Ridwan said...

Gigi I am delighted to hear from you.

I wish you well up there on the Island!

Yeah I know that Sesame Street song ... running through my head now.

Tell me your plans for the summer when you can.

You need to escape too :)

Peace sista.


Kashea said...

I feel you on that brother Ridwan, Incidentally this bill passed a day after I booked my flight to Arizona to perform at a few shows. Unfortunately when you buy tickets on experian you can't get your money back unless you ironically do everything on up to provide your papers n green card. So, I'm going down with my protest shirts in full blaze and revolution and spoken word pieces in my mind daring one of them gringo porkers to question my idendity. The only problem is what country are they gonna deport me to? lol.

Ridwan said...

Thanks for your comment brother Kashea!

Now what you doing in the souf? ;)

Be careful in the crazy empire. Stay away from balconies and ballrooms!

Peace to you.

Kashea said...

Don't forget street corners and barely lit gravel roads! Man I'm doing big thangs with the spoken word scene. Hittin AZ in June and might hit Los Angeles Arkansas in July if the Heavens smile upon me. The second reason I'm heading to AZ is I am meeting someone special down there but shhh don tell nobody Teehee!

Ridwan said...

:0) naaaah I won't tell anyone!

Be good and safe. Very happy to hear you blowin' up large with your spoken words.