Cardinal: Arizona immigration law is ‘retrogressive, mean-spirited, and useless’

Roman Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles Roger Mahony has penned an article both elegant and blistering in response to recent anti-immigrant legislation passed in Arizona.

The Arizona legislature just passed the country’s most retrogressive, mean-spirited, and useless anti-immigrant law [SB 1070, awaiting the expected signature of Gov. Jan Brewer]. The tragedy of the law is its totally flawed reasoning: that immigrants come to our country to rob, plunder, and consume public resources. That is not only false, the premise is nonsense.

What led the Arizona legislature to pass such a law is so obvious to all of us who have been working for federal comprehensive immigration reform: the present immigration system is completely incapable of balancing our nation’s need for labor and the supply of that labor. We have built a huge wall along our southern border, and have posted in effect two signs next to each other. One reads, “No Trespassing,” and the other reads “Help Wanted.” The ill-conceived Arizona law does nothing to balance our labor needs.

Read Cardinal’s Mahony’s full article here. Jesuit Refugee Service/USA agrees with Cardinal Mahony that our focus should not be on exclusion, but on “passing a federal comprehensive immigration law which is forward-looking and which will help balance our need for adequate labor forces in the coming years.”

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