The Arizona Borderlands Protection and Preservation Act, which was written by the state’s “respected” Senator and former Republican Presidential Candidate John McCain, had been sent to the House and Senate for further consideration as of May 6th, 2015, almost two months after its original introduction (McCain, Text of the Arizona Borderlands Protection and Preservation Act).
The idea presented within this new bill is rather simple, yet it is cloaked by an entirely different and standoffish double standard. It, as any immigration reform bill written by Republicans would be, directly explains how immigration is harming federal lands. The bill ignores the possibility of good immigration, such as the introduction of new citizens or with an increase in economics, and it only focuses on the negative aspects of a specific “breed” of immigrants – those who smuggle and bring in illegal goods, such as drugs.
The bill in its entirety is a pathetic attempt at blocking off immigration from the Arizona-Mexico “southern” border by claiming that the land within, of at which 85% is federally owned (Carlson), is being harmed. The idealism being presented here is simply a faux attempt at preventing immigration for the good of the state, which according to McCain would protect federal lands and give jobs back to American people; but we can easily see that the bill doesn’t care about any of this, as it focuses only on the negative aspects of immigration and refuses to even present itself towards a pro-Mexican, or even pro-immigration, standpoint.
Even the presented act itself can be seen as an attempt to gain more power over border controls in the local area, as seen between lines 7 through 18 on page three of the bill, which directly lists exactly what exactly the border patrols of Arizona need to keep the “dangers” out of the federal land. By introducing motorized border patrols, one can be shocked to see just how dangerous the border controls could be to protected zones.
This new act wished to ignore already instated legislation that restrict border patrols, which could affect any citizen who feels against the idea behind advanced border control. It focuses not on the land it wishes to move into, as environmentalists have already stated, but it moves closer into the anti-Immigration status that Arizona has always been known for. This time, instead of being bluntly honest like a majority of the past attempts at anti-immigration policies (Planas), it attempts to faintly cover it up with a false bravado towards improving security on federal lands. This is not a bill towards protecting the federal lands, this is yet another attempt to restrict immigration in the state of Arizona.
One can easily see this through the already initiated legislation, which was federally approved beforehand, being stood up against by the lawmakers supporting this bill (Carlson). But we also can see how the current laws and regulations concerning border control and immigration entirely is already working without this McCain bill.
In short, any ideas such as the Arizona Borderlands Protection and Preservation Act have no right going through the structures of Congress. Legislation in the past has restricted immigration, leaving everything in shambles. It, and anything like it, is just an attempt to get the Secretary of Homeland Security, Agriculture, and Interior (respectively) on its side in an attempt to modernize and expand the border security and patrols themselves across the “southern border”, which may or may not be limited to the Arizona-Mexico stretch of land in this Arizona-based bill (as the 85% of the land recognized and discussed is in the state itself).
By apprehending or turning back illegal immigration, we see a turn down in the American dream and allow a racist enterprise to prevent illegal immigrants from going through the naturalization process in order to become citizens themselves. By bumping up border patrols with new equipment and motorized vehicles, we see an overpowered and unnecessary police group ravishing the border below our states. While one side of our Congress may see this as an advance towards “protecting the land”, we must realize that it is our first and foremost job to protect the people; and if we remember properly, immigrants are people too, illegal or not.
Carlson, Mark. McCain and Salmon introduce AZ borderlands bill. 17 March 2015. 11 June 2015.http://www.12news.com/story/news/12-news/2015/03/17/12-news-mccain-salmon-arizona-borderlands-bill/24903045/.
McCain, John. McCAIN & SALMON INTRO BILL TO ENHANCE ARIZONA BORDER PATROL. 17 March 2015. 11 June 2015. http://www.mccain.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/press-releases?ID=f7414f34-be60-48f6-94bd-e1d0b9ef7efc.
Text of the Arizona Borderlands Protection and Preservation Act. 17 March 2015. 11 June 2015.https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/s750/text.
Planas, Roque. Arizona Republican Praises Anti-Immigrant ‘Hate Group’ (UPDATED). 28 March 2015. 11 June 2015. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/28/al-melvin-hate-group_n_5049880.html