Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Arizona's SB 1070 works perfectly

Even though it has not yet taken effect, and not yet faced the inevitable court challenges, Arizona's Senate Bill 1070 has worked very well. In fact it has worked far better than the original authors could have imagined. This may sound strange considering how little time it has had, but as Ayn Rand would point out, if you want to know if something is right ask yourself "by what standard?"

It's actually surprisingly obvious how this bill is a success. Across the country people are debating it, but they’re all either debating "white" versus "brown" or "legal" versus "illegal." Outside of a small handful of libertarian commentators, nobody is pointing out that this bill has established a legal precedent for "papers please."

Some will think that, due to not being of the ethnic group most likely to be targeted, that they are actually safe. But, given the need to not appear to be racially profiling, the police will have license to stop anybody, at any time, on the grounds of "suspicion." And given the overly wide leeway given to police to stop people on "suspicion" that means anybody can be stopped at any time.

This means that if someone fails to show proper respect, they can be asked to show their papers. If someone insults a cop, he can be asked to show his papers. If someone stares too long at a cop, he can be asked to show his papers. Already the crime of "contempt of cop" carries the high risk of being assaulted, and then arrested for "disorderly conduct", with the additional crime of "resisting arrest" and "assaulting a cop" for anyone who tries to resist this unlawful arrest. Now an additional charge can be tacked on.

According to the statute, failure to prove citizenship can carry a fine of up to $100 and 6 days in jail for first time offenders. Originally the bill carried a fine of up to $500 and 20 days in jail for first time offenders. Those who fail to carry documentation more often face steeper fines and sentences.

What remains to be seen is how this act will be enforced on legal citizens who are simultaneously guilty of "contempt of cop" and failure to carry sufficient documentation. Will this require all people in Arizona to carry full proof of citizenship at all times? Will this require all people in Arizona to show said paperwork to police on demand or pay the fine originally intended for illegal aliens?

This bill worked far better than intended. The popular debate focuses on the racial and immigration aspects, and ignores the fact that this implements "papers please."


Brian said...

You are so incorrect man. It specifically states with "Lawful contact"
I am not going to do your homework for you, but look at the following in the bill.

Page 1, lines 27-31 "Is convicted of a violation" This is in addition to being here illegally.

Page 4, lines 20-23 "Is in violation of any civil traffic violation AND this law" They need a reason to pull you over. 1070 isn't a civil traffic violation.

Suspicion does not warrant for being pulled over or having made contact. Its people that can't read the bill, including those protesting it, that have no clue and make up this junk and assume.

Just so you know, if your legal, you will have 'papers' and its called ID, passport, green card, etc. If your here illegally and they need to identify somebody, what else are they to do. They are going to need to investigate to find out to make sure they are talking to who they say they are. Illegal aliens have the proper 'papers' and they are usually from stolen identity and or fake documents all of which is reasonable suspicion to believe somebody is here illegally or breaking another law. Making fake documents with YOUR name on it is a huge business in Arizona. Hey, why not, lets let them keep stealing identities (breaking the law), using fake ID's (breaking the law), driving with no license or insurance (breaking the law).

Ayn R. Key said...

I'm not incorrect. "Lawful contact" is indeed included in the bill, true. Currently any contact has to be "lawful contact" and yet people who show disrespect are arrested for "disorderly conduct", which is code for "contempt of cop." Try googling "contempt of cop" and get back to me.

As for your last paragraph, are we required to carry ID at all times? Yes, we need it when we are driving but what about the rest of the time? Do we need it to walk down the street? Do we need it to pay cash for items that are not under special control (alcohol, tobacco, etc)?

Theoretically, no we don't. I'm not just talking about legal aliens, I'm talking about full citizens as well.

Full citizens not carrying their identification can be taken into custody for not carrying their papers with them. Yes, they can.

Anonymous said...

Ayn, I wonder exactly how people such as yourself would have this problem addressed? You have a soverign(sp) State trying to address a problem that has infected the entire country. I understand that this does in fact touch on the "papers please" concept that you allude to. However, your failure to give a solution to the original problem (illegal immigration) leaves no room for argument. Do you not feel that illegal immigrants in this country are a problem? Or are you another head in the sand "sky is falling" liberal that thinks that all people should be free to come and go into this country as they please? I for one am a taxpaying/law abiding citizen that is becoming increasingly frustrated at the minority voice subverting already in place laws that have become a cancer in this country that will eventually lead to more violence and hatred. I think that this is becoming a growing sentiment with the majority of people in this country, when you have young kids being sent home from school for wearing t-shirts that have a symbol of the american flag because they are wearing them on a day that is considered a foreign holiday I question the tactics in play by a liberal leadership, and the "minority rules" agenda of this once great nation. The pendulum will swing back to the conservative side sooner or later. This is just a step in that direction.

Ayn R. Key said...

Anonymous, I was not addressing the topic of immigration, legal or otherwise. Nor did I merely allude to the "papers please" aspect of this law: it was the whole point of this particular posting.

But you want my solution to the ancillary issue. I suppose I really should write a blog entry about it some time, but the short answer is this: stop with the welfare programs and the illegal immigration problem will go away.

By the way, it is very unlikely that somene with the screen name "Ayn" is any sort of liberal.

Dave said...

Here I am in Texas. I was driving home one night from an oil rig a few years ago that I had just returned to service. It had been one of those typical 18 hour oilfield kinda days, pretty damn rough.

A DPS officer pulled me over for not having rear license plate lamps. I'm thinking OK no problem, thanks for the heads up, give me my ticket, and I'll move on and get those little light bulbs replaced asap. "No, get out of the vehicle man who pay's my salary, I want to show you what your money has bought."

20 minutes later I was released. Everything but a cavity search went down...who are you...where are you going...where have you been...why were you there...who do you work for...what's all of this stuff in your truck for....wait here, I'll be back after I run a check on your sorry tax paying ass... I was stunned.

I'm white, he was white...race doesn't have anything to do with this... Paraphrasing Gunny Hartman from Full Metal Jacket; "To me, you are all equally worthless."

Don't you get it yet Brian? Instead of taking away this fires fuel, it's being used as an excuse to lock down our society even further, just like 911.

Your corporate welfare loving government wants to gain maximum control of the citizens of this nation and the's happening right before our eyes. And fear is the king pin.

End the entitlement programs, change the 14th amendment to reflect that anyone born here is not a citizen unless they have parents that are legal residents and shutdown the slave labor trade...but it will not happen because our shawdow government will not allow it to happen. It's clearly not what they want. This empire is coming to an end. That's what they want. And they do not wish it to be a peaceful transition.

Hyperinflation is going to be a very rude awakening for North Americans.

Evelyn said...

Do you think Arizona's immigration law goes too far? Answer the poll and leave a comment about your feelings online on

Anonymous said...


Cops have always been assholes. In every society, in every age. Goes with the job. You just figured this out?