Tag Archives: jan brewer

Indicting Sheriff Arpaio

Sheriff Joe Arpaio and prisonersShreveport Meeting Friday night with immigration reform organizers after their long day of meetings in New Orleans on the 2nd day of the “Turning the Tide” conference it was clear that spirits were good among the organizers, despite the fact that prospects for comprehensive reform seem to have sunk to new lows.  These were hard cases.  No one believed that the Democrats would keep control of Congress.  Loss of the House of Representatives was seen as a foregone conclusion.  Increasingly the gallows humor of immigration was going to become:  “if it weren’t for bad changes, we won’t see any changes at all!”

There is a clearly a strategic split among the reformers that has existed in a dialectic for some time, but is increasingly sharpening in more stark relief between organizers who believe that the chance has to come from local projects and grassroots organizing and resistance versus the policy-lobbyist wonks with the greater resources still spinning the stories of a immaculate change conception with the Beltway.  This division is spoken of in quiet tones behind the scenes but is constantly part of the debate.  With more than 150 organizers in New Orleans the absence of some of the folks from the national campaign “table” was shocking to me, even if there presence had been no more than solidarity.

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Day Laborers and Immigrants Rule in “Machete”

New Orleans The search for movies with a politically satirical message is unwavering and someone has to do it, so there we were at opening night for the world release for “Machete,” the new Richard Rodriguez blood and gore flick, and we were thumbs up all the way.  In fact our friends at NDLON, the National Day Laborers’ Organizing Network, should have gotten Rodriquez to allow them to use his movie for pre-opening fundraisers.

There are not many times when someone can rise out of the street corner day laborer pool, and end up leading the Network, the cholos, and their own hermanos and hermanas in a charge against vigilantes killing immigrants coming across the border.  This is one, so enjoy!

Futhermore, the Mexicano-naros rationale for wanting an electrified border fence between both countries so that they could drive up the price of drugs by controlling any of the fence’s vulnerabilities, actually started to make some sense out of this billion dollar folly by the end of the movie.

Luckily for Rodriguez, his movie escapes being a total comic book portrayal thanks to real live “stranger than fiction” politicians like Arizona’s Governor Jan Brewer and her well watched brain freeze in the days before the movie went nationwide.  Many had known that her brain had frozen years before but the proof was there for everyone to see, and that actually made the politicians seem more credible and real in the movie.

Life goes on and it’s hard.