Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Where do we draw the line?

The recent conviction against Jeffrey Conroy on manslaughter charges for the killing of Marcelo Lucero sends mixed signals to many. Some will consider this conviction as justice while others will consider it as too lenient. In either case, the families pain will never be served enough justice.

When looking at this anti-immigrant (in Marcelo's case,more so directed at those perceived as Mexicans) sentiment and many other hate crimes we must also look to the root. After all, the criminals here were all teenagers who obviously learned this anti-immigrant hate somewhere along their short lives. Consider the Arizona Anti-Immigrant Bill (Senate Bill 1070) which is awaiting the approval of that states governor. This bill would make it a state crime not to carry proof of immigration status and would require police to ask about a person's immigration status if there is any doubt. What message does this send to our youth? Will it create the same attitudes towards immigrants as those that Marcelo's killers have? Enter John McCain, “The state of Arizona is acting and doing what it feels it needs to do in light of the fact that the federal government is not fulfilling its fundamental responsibility — to secure our borders.” and "the people whose homes and property are being violated. It's the drive-by that -- the drivers of cars with illegals in it that are intentionally causing accidents on the freeway." Now, again, what message does this send? Where do we draw the line?

Let's be realistic, some will turn a blind eye and say that this doesn't affect them but the truth is it affects us all. Regardless, of your nationality, if you are Latino this could end up having its repercussions. Think of the trickle effects if this bill passes in Arizona. If you are Latino this should concern you.

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