PHOENIX--Arizona passed the toughest immigration bill in the United States on Friday that many critics say is a slap in the face to over a century of civil rights efforts across the globe, fanned by lingering Birther sentiments against President Obama.
"Whoa, whoa. Hold up. Let's get one thing straight," said Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, who signed the bill into action last week. "This is not some snarky reaction to a black president in the White House right now. That's ridiculous--everyone knows there are no black people in Arizona. This is a reaction to Washington's inability to act."
During Obama's first year in office, the Department of Homeland Security, lead by Governor Brewer's predecessor Janet Napolitano, deported on average over a thousand people a day--more than twice the average under George W. Bush--and a detail many suspect never trickled down to Arizona lawmakers because it wasn't fair and balanced enough.
Governor Brewer defended the new bill, saying it was a crackdown on illegal immigration in the state that would require police to stop anyone suspected of being illegal and demand proof of U.S. documentation.
"Um... Am I the only one who remembers the first twenty minutes of Schindler's List?" asked Cardinal Archbishop Roger Mahony of Los Angeles.
Arizona lawmakers say the new bill is about legality, not ethnicity. Owners of cars with purple-tinted windows and last names spelled in gold Gothic lettering can expect to be pulled over and questioned, regardless of ethnic background.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says law enforcement officials plan on implementing a tagging system to prohibit the blatant racial profiling that many fear could result from the new law.
"Any detained brown people," said Mr. Arpaio, "found to be American brown people will be given a star to wear on their clothing, like mine--see? Now, this way my officers know if they've already handcuffed and interrogated someone. And like I tell my brown people: Wear it with pride! It's a star that says they're winners. They're special. Like USDA beef."
"Going forward, it's important to look back and learn from history," said the governor, herself a product of Arizona's education system. "And if there's one thing that history has taught us again and again, it's that conservative white people in political power in regions where they're the ethnic minority--waving flags to fan the flames of their racial, economic, and nationalistic fears--always ends well."
Earlier that week, Ms. Brewer also signed into law a bill allowing Arizona citizens to carry concealed weapons without a permit and lifting the ban on firearms in bars.
"Always," said the governor. "Always, always, always."