Events in Maricopa
The Maricopa County Sheriff’s office arrested 27 people Monday night in Arpaio’s 13th anti-immigrant raid in the Latino Community. The Sheriff’s office says 18 of these arrests were of undocumented immigrants. The two-day raid utilized helicopters and around 200 deputies and posse members. All of the raids were conducted in Latino neighborhoods in Phoenix. This comes after the fact that last month the Department of Homeland Security stripped the sheriff of the ability to detain people to check whether they have documentation or not.
The Racist Crimes of Joe Arpaio
The infamous Sheriff Joe Arpaio has come under fire from the Latino Community as well as Civil Rights Groups for racial profiling as well as strong arm tactics to intimidate his critics. Last year, thousands marched in Phoenix against Arpaio after it was revealed that he forced 200 prisoners in prison uniforms, shackled and cuffs to march from a City Jail to a makeshift concentration camp outside the city limits, complete with an electric fence. Temperatures inside the tents have been recorded as high as 150 degrees.
When asked his opinion about being called a “Klan member” on CNN’s reactionary Lou Dobbs show, Arpaio replied, “I think it’s an honor.” This same Sheriff has arrested more than 1,400 immigrants in in the past two years, and has been responsible for parading his prisoners down major city streets in their underwear. CNN’s Rick Sanchez asked the Sheriff how he determines whether one is suspected for violating U.S. immigration law, to which Arpaio essentially admits to racial profiling: “It has to do with their conduct, what type of clothes they’re wearing, their speech…a lot of variables involved.” When Sanchez asked how clothing was able to determine whether one was a citizen or not, Arpaio answered: “You look at the federal law. The federal law specifies—the speech, the clothes, the environment, the erratic behavior; it’s right in the law.” The problem is this law does not exist in the Federal Code.
When he realized this boneheaded error, he said it really did not matter and “I still think there’s a federal law out there that gives me the authority to do this…I might not have the right one, but there is one out there.” Sheriff Arpaio boasted about a non-existent law on national TV, twice, once to Glenn Beck and once to Rick Sanchez in order to justify his unconscionable wrongdoing. He is a man void of conscience. He is a sadistic and vindictive megalomaniac, a cunning and pathological liar whose actions amount to nothing more than racial profiling and ethnic cleansing.
The Facts At Hand
Immigration is an issue of great importance in the United States. Immigrants in and of themselves are not harmful to any nation. Migration of Hispanic and Latino peoples at the present time is a result of neo-colonial and neo-liberal policy worldwide, including that of countries such as the US, Britain, Canada, the UK and the EU. Each year, tens of thousands of Latin Americans pay thousands of dollars, usually around 5,000, to immigrant smugglers commonly referred to as “coyotes.” This sum is equivalent to eighteen months or in some cases up to three years’ wages for the vast majority of people in those countries. The reason so many immigrants choose to cross borders illegally is because the US immigration process is not only expensive, but can take up to five years. Human smugglers take advantage of an immigrant’s quest for work and higher wages, and this exploitation is possible only because borders exist.
Thousands of “illegal” immigrants die each year trying to each America, Canada, Europe and other rich capitalist countries. They are killed both from starvation and dehydration from the arduous trek over borders but also from the bullets of the US Border Patrol and from racist “volunteer” groups such as the infamous Minutemen. This large number is well-documented by sources such as the BBC and CNN. Even once in country, immigrants face ruthless persecution and the breaking-up of families due to the recent rash of raids by the ICE. Frequently they are held in prison conditions not fit for animals, and often die from such imposed conditions.
In no way does the American Party of Labor blame the immigrants themselves for this condition. The issue of immigration must be analyzed and debated by our Party at length. The conclusion has been reached that the immigrant populations in the United States must be joined with the rest of the working class, including documented and undocumented immigrants.
The Dirty Little Secret about Illegal Immigration
Despite all the noise raised by those in power, “illegal” immigration is actually beneficial to the bourgeoisie. It provides them a cheap labor pool that is super-exploitable and is unable to seek the protection of even the limited rights that an ordinary worker has, since the immigrant has been termed “illegal.”
A Common Criticism
Notable about the criticism that “immigrants take up jobs” is the fact that the only reason such a thing happens is because of privately-owned means of production. Think for a moment—is there somehow a “limited” amount of work to be done in the world? Of course not, there is always more work to be done of one type or another. Why then, do we have a limited number of jobs to be had?
The answer is very simple. Beyond a certain number of employees, the surplus that a boss or a CEO takes from the sale of his company’s products becomes smaller and smaller. It is thus in the owning classes’ interests to limit the number of workers they have and to maximize the amount of work done by each, even to the conditions of slave labor, in order to maximize profit and make their surplus as large as possible. It all boils down to profit motive.
Of Course, Abolishing Borders Overnight is Utopian
The problem is not so much that borders exist—it’s that capitalism exists. The dissolution of borders can only happen in the far future after the removal of capitalism on a world scale. That is what is necessary to reach the highest stage of communism in which the state is obsolete and disappears.