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While I have been recuperating, there were two competing rallies regarding SB 1070 in Arizona. One side was protesting in downtown Phoenix, the other side was protesting near where my husband’s step-father lives in suburban Tempe. The downtown Phoenix featured the people who were against SB 1070 and in favor of immigration reform. Naturally the one in Tempe supported SB 1070 and were calling for the deportation of all illegal aliens.

I’m really pissed at that latter rally in Tempe. Ever since my recently deceased mother-in-law remarried and moved to Tempe, I’ve seen first-hand how the suburbanites there routinely hire illegals from Mexico to do the gardening, house painting, pool cleaning, and even child care. These people support SB 1070 while secretly hiring illegal aliens because they are too greedy and cheap to hire U.S. citizens. With U.S. citizens, you are generally required to pay the minimum wage and you also must adhere to laws regarding work hours, occupational safety, and health care—which is something you don’t have to do with illegal aliens. It’s much easier to intimidate an illegal to work longer hours for low pay and fewer benefits than a citizen because an illegal has fewer legal options.

If the suburbanites who were at the Tempe protest would stop hiring illegals, then this problem would go away in a short period of time because people in Mexico would be less likely to make a risky move if there were no jobs available for them. But they are too greedy and self-centered to do so because they want to have their cake and eat it too. And don’t give me that crap about "we need to hire illegals because they do very necessary jobs that U.S. citizens don’t want to do". Given the current high unemployment rate, I’m willing to bet that there are unemployed and underemployed U.S. citizens willing to do the so-called "jobs that U.S. citizens don’t want" that could be hired instead of illegals if it weren’t for the greed and selfishness of the job providers.

This morning I was so tired that I skipped going to the local Episcopalian church that my husband’s step-father belongs to so I could sleep more. The extra rest helped me enough that I was able to walk to the nearby community pool with my husband and do some brief swimming and a little bit of hot tubbing. By the early evening I felt well enough so I was able to go to my husband’s step-brother’s home with my husband and his step-father for a pleasant evening of dinner and conversation.

Unfortunately things took a turn for the worse totally out of the blue. As the three of us were leaving my brother-in-law’s home, my husband’s step-father suddenly fell right on his back on to the floor in the foyer. He was lying there for several minutes totally confused. We managed to get him to sit up only to find blood on the floor where his head was and he was also bleeding on my brother-in-law. At that moment we knew we had to get him to a hospital but he kept on saying "No, I’m fine." Well, my brother-in-law talked him into going to the hospital and he drove him there while my husband and I drove his car back to his house. As of this writing, we are there with my father-in-law’s dog, Jay-Jay, while waiting for word from the hospital. I really hope everything is okay because I really don’t need another sudden family tragedy just two months after my mother-in-law’s sudden death.

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As of tomorrow my husband and I will be traveling to Arizona. I know we will be violating that boycott against the state because of its asinine new law that is encouraging police profiling of all Hispanic immigrants regardless of whether they are citizens or not (SB 1070) and its equally asinine newer law prohibiting public schools from teaching the history of non-white ethnic groups (HB 2281). If I had my choice, I would rather honor that boycott but my husband’s recently widowed step-father lives in the state as well as all four of his step-siblings. We are only flying out for the weekend to look in on my father-in-law and go over a few loose ends regarding my late mother-in-law’s estate. While we are there we will look in on my Mexican-American sister-in-law to see how she and her three children are faring since those horrible laws were passed.

If I happened to have any free time while I’m in Arizona, I’ll update this blog. Just keep in mind that if I do so, I won’t be as consistent or prolific as usual. If I end up not having any free time, then I’ll resume writing in this blog after we return and get over the jet lag.

As for my online stores, I’ve just put my Etsy store in vacation mode. My Zazzle store is not directly operated by me so you can still order things from there and get them in a timely fashion.

But it's a dry fascism in Arizona!

Soon after creating the first t-shirt regarding the passage of the new Arizona law (SB 1070), my husband came up with the slogan for another t-shirt. I finally got around to creating a t-shirt around my husband’s idea after I read Sarah Palin’s idiotic quote from yesterday when she said "We’re all Arizonans now." Uh, no, Sarah, we are not all Arizonans. Or at least we are all NOT the white Arizonans who support the police questioning anyone whose skin is darker than caucasian skin and who also support the ban on public schools teaching any kind of ethnic studies class (especially the ones that focus on African Americans, Native Americans, and Latinos).

My husband came up with that slogan based on the "But it’s a dry heat" one that one can frequently find on t-shirts, shot glasses, and other stuff sold in Arizona souvenir shops.

You can now purchase that shirt in a variety of sizes, colors, and prices right here.


Happy May Day! Last May 1 I was attending a Craft Summit in Washington, DC that was put on by Hello Craft when a May Day demonstration just happened to march past the building where the bulk of the conference was held. The demonstrators were in favor of immigrants’ rights and immigration reform. I pulled my portable Insignia video camera out of my purse and shot the march as it passed by.

Since that time, Arizona has passed the most restrictive immigration bill in the country (SB 1070) and it has caused a major uproar. In fact, I heard on the news today that there will be even larger immigration rallies in cities across the country today (including Washington, DC). If it weren’t for the fact that I already have plans to attend a party at a friend’s house today, I would be in DC with the protestors. There are times when I am worried about my Mexican-American sister-in-law, who lives in Phoenix and is at risk for police harassment despite the fact that she is an American citizen and has absolutely NOTHING to do with those Mexican drug gangs who have been slipping into Arizona and kidnapping people in places like Phoenix and Tucson (and whose activities have spurned this harsh law).

I’ve just opened a new store on Zazzle.com. Unlike my Etsy shop, which deals with handmade goods made in very limited runs of 10 or less, my Zazzle shop will deal with items printed in large batches that I really can’t handle myself.

So far I only have the following design available but the shirts are available in a variety of sizes, colors, and prices. You can buy this shirt right here.

A Police Officer Asked Me for My ID in Arizona

Not all people living in Arizona like that new bill that has just passed the state legislature giving police the right to ask for ID of anyone who looks Hispanic, regardless of whether he/she is a citizen or whether he/she has been accused of a crime.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mario-solismarich/az-students-arrested-for_b_545958.html?ref=twitter

I’m still worried about the future of my Mexican-American sister-in-law and her three half-Hispanic children–all of whom live in Phoenix. If that bill gets signed by the governor, all of them will be sitting ducks for police harassment.

Until her death last month, my mother-in-law spent the last several years of her life in Arizona. She grew up outside St. Louis, went to college in Ohio, and raised a family with her first husband in New York. Of all the places she lived, she seemed to like Phoenix the best. She would proudly point out the state’s highway beautification programs, talk about how low the unemployment rate is in Phoenix, and expressed gratitude that she has had to stop shoveling snow since she arrived in the state.

She would’ve been horrified by the lastest news in Arizona, where the legislature has just passed an new resolution (SB 1070) which gives police the right to ask anyone who they think are illegal immigrants for identification papers. They now have the right to ask this of both immigrants and citizens at will without having to prove justifiable search and seizure nor do they have to be suspected of committing any kind of crime. Since the vast majority of recent immigrants living in Arizona–both legal and illegal–are from Mexico, the police have been empowered to pull over anyone who looks Hispanic to demand legal identification on just little more than a whim. And if, for some reason, the person is a legal citizen who just happened to have left his/her legal papers at home, the cops have the right to arrest that person on the spot.

My husband has a step-sister who is a Mexican-American. She was born in the United States to a Mexican-American family and she was later adopted by my husband’s step-father and his first wife (both of them white caucasians of European descent). Thanks to the fact that she is a Mexican-American who currently lives in Phoenix, she is now at risk of being harrassed by the cops simply because she is a Latina. Her three half-Hispanic children are also at risk for such harrassment. Never mind the fact that her and her three children were all born in the United States and they are American citizens. They are now sitting targets for any cop who’s in the mood to cause trouble for someone who looks Latino and they won’t have any legal recourse unless some court decides to rule this new law unconstitutional.

What’s more, my mother-in-law was actively involved in the Civil Rights movement back in the 1960’s. (She and her first husband–my father-in-law–were actively involved in the local New York City area chapter of CORE until there was an internal dispute, some militant blacks took over the leadership, and asked all the white members to leave because they wanted to fight their own battles themselves without any help from other races/ethnic groups.) Given her civil rights background and her Mexican-American step-daughter and grandchildren, she would’ve been horrified by what happened in her own state.

I heard there are now calls for an economic boycott of that state if the governor decides to sign that bill. I feel torn because I want to make a statement about how I feel about Arizona’s boneheaded move by voting with my money but, on the other hand, my husband’s step-father and step-siblings still live in the state and I would love to visit them from time to time.

At this point, I wish they all live in New Mexico or California.

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