Good thing there’s no “activist judges” in SCOTUS

Arizona, Immigration, and the Supreme Court: A Dispatch from Foxnewsistan

So Roberts, Scalia et. al., are reviewing Arizona’s SB1070 anti-immigration law and have immediately declared that racial profiling, which is at the very least implicitly encouraged by the law, off the table for arguments. Not to mention the dismissal of the Fed being the sole enforcer for immigration law apparently. This is very dangerous reasoning. No matter your politics on this issue, granting one state the right to enforce or otherwise interpret federal law opens the door for any state to freely interpret and cherry-pick laws it chooses to accept and enforce. This already happened during the Articles of Confederation days and was deemed by the Framers to be ineffective.

Granted, California is one state that has chosen not to enforce marijuana laws in favor of medical marijuana, but that situation is different in that it’s more of a protest against federal law and besides it’s not actually the State’s duty to uphold federal laws pertaining to controlled substances and/or international affairs (immigration).

I could go on, but for right now I’m very nervous about these activist judges claiming to be upholding what the Framers wanted and instead totally going against them to further their personal politics and biases. Not to mention the Arizona law is phrased in such a way to promote and encourage racial profiling with goes against other federal anti-discrimination laws. This whole thing is fucked up.

An Open Letter to White People…

A really awesome essay I just read. Here are my callouts:

Here’s what angers me the most, though: It’s that you can’t see, or refuse to see, that this distinction between intent and impact is the very same distinction to which you appeal when you blame Trayvon for his own murder or when you blame rape victims for their own rapes. You are saying, in effect, Trayvon may not have meant to get shot, but he should have known that wearing his hoodie up like that would make him look threatening to the world. He should have known better. How is that not the same distinction? Why do you get to use this distinction against Trayvon, an innocent child, without anyone getting to use it against you when you try to explain away the actions of the man who killed him? Why? Why does Trayvon or any other person of color have to carry cognitive and volitional burdens you don’t? Why are your comfort and ease and your precious feelings and your ability to mouth off whenever you want about whatever you want so damned important? Why do black kids have to learn to pay for your peace of mind and self-esteem by having to worry about whether what they are wearing might contribute to them getting hunted down in the street? Why is this a privilege you get and he doesn’t? Why can’t you see that this is as blatantly unfair as saying that some spaces are whites only? Why?

In case you’re wondering folks, that is what white privilege is.

Some of you may be thinking, “Brian, you’re not just saying that everyone has to be mindful of what they say and think. You’re saying that as a white person I have to be on my guard in a way people of color don’t. You’re saying I have a heavier burden to carry in this respect than they do.” Actually I doubt many of you would put it so carefully. Usually you– not all of you, not going to name names, you will know who you are–simply cry, “reverse racism!”, then fold your arms and think you’ve made your point. Except you’re simply wrong about this. Notice I didn’t say that we have a difference of opinion about this. You are just wrong. A young black man walking down the street wearing a hoodie is just not inherently threatening, unless, of course, you insist on seeing it that way, and that says more about you than it does the man. Saying and thinking “young black men wearing hooded sweatshirts look threatening,” though, perpetuates the notion that young black men just are threatening. The social facts are simply different on either side in a way that tracks a differential distribution of power. Also, let’s not forget the fact that if we are keeping score on who bears the heavier burdens overall under systemic racism, white folks can bear this burden and still come out way ahead.

Goes for most of my readers too!

We white folks do have a big burden to carry in this one respect, it’s true. We have to be very careful and mindful in discussions of race. But this is not the fault of people of color. At all. What is at fault is the fact that the situations in which we find ourselves are constructed in racist ways that give us privileges we haven’t earned. What white folks should be upset about is the racist legacy left to us by our own forbears. We find ourselves in situations where ignorance is bliss and knowledge is sometimes painful. We have to do hard work, because we can get by just fine by looking the other way; we have to sacrifice time and comfort. After doing so, we might still feel awkward. This work isn’t easy.

via To My Fellow White People: An Open Letter « Thought Required; Pants Optional..

Well said!

Ethnic Studies Under Attack in Arizona High Schools

Legislation that will end ethnic studies programs in Arizona high schools looks set to be signed into law by the state’s governor. Promoted by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Horne, the law will deprive public schools that do not eliminate ethnic studies courses of 10% of their state funding.

Savage Minds

(via)