The Asian Pacific American Legal Center (APALC) and Asian American Justice Center (AAJC) in May jointly filed a federal lawsuit with other civil rights groups to challenge SB 1070, Arizona’s unconstitutional anti-immigrant law.
“Arizona’s actions not only interfere with federal law, but will invite widespread racial profiling in violation of the U.S. Constitution,” said Ronald Lee, staff attorney at AAJC in a press release.
SB 1070 requires police to demand papers from people they stop that they “reasonably suspect” are undocumented.
Julie Su, litigation director at APALC, said in the release that Arizona’s new law echoes one of the worst chapters in U.S. immigration history.
From Dr. Wen Ho Lee, a U.S. citizen accused of spying because of his Chinese ethnicity in 1999, to South Asian and Arab Americans being profiled as threats to national security after the 9-11 attack, Asian Americans are frequent victims of racial profiling in American history.
Parties to the lawsuit worry that this law will frighten crime victims from immigrant communities, especially victims of domestic violence, from seeking help. Others worry about becoming a police target just by being associated with or helping immigrants.
“Our members are afraid that this new immigration law will hamper any possibility of an economic recovery, a very real fear given the enormous consumer power of Asian American consumers in Arizona,” said Ted Namba, president of the Asian Chamber of Commerce, in the release. ♦