From The Grio — Sometimes you find the greatest wisdom from the most unlikely sources. Years ago, I was getting my hair cut by a barber who considered himself to be the expert on all things socio-political. His sensitivity to the issues became especially heightened when I came in for a visit, since he knew that I had a bit of a platform to share my ideas. On the topic of immigration, he cited the manner by which many Americans describe immigrants, especially undocumented residents from Mexico. Many Americans, in jokes and emails, describe Hispanic immigrants as uncivilized, odd, and even less than human. The barber summed it up nicely when he said, “They’ve become the new niggers of America.”

I agreed with his wisdom, especially since he cut my hair for free. What is sadly true in America is that our nation’s reaction to those who are different from our selves is one that is laced with fear, snobbery and malevolent intent. That is the foundation of the new immigration law in Arizona.

By now making it legal to racially profile black and brown people, the state of Arizona has continued its quest to be officially known as the most racist state in America. They are the same state that for years refused to acknowledge Martin Luther King’s birthday as a national holiday, they systemically violate human rights of prison inmates, Arizona State University insulted Barack Obama by failing to offer him an honorary degree when he became president of the United States, and Arizona government is now going to require the president to prove his citizenship before running for office in 2012. Therefore, the outrageous legislation on immigration reform is right on time from a state that has proven itself to be increasingly obtuse in its thinking.

With that said, let’s talk honestly about the immigration mess in America. The decision of a relatively racist state to do something that is probably illegal and clearly unethical does not imply that there may not be a reasonable explanation for their overreaction. Phoenix, Arizona has become the kidnapping capital of the world, with more kidnapping incidents than any place on earth, other than Mexico City. Much of this violence is related to drug cartels and illegal immigration. That’s one of the reasons that over 70 percent of the people in Arizona support this legislation. By failing to protect our borders, the United States government has put states in a position where they have no choice but to protect themselves. Those states having the least concern about being politically correct are going to do whatever is necessary to fix the problem. (Continue Reading @ The Grio)

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