Recent Arizona events have shined the nation’s attention on the Grand Canyon State. And amidst that focus, it’s been easy to forget the country’s recent fixation with Arizona’s main industry: immigration news.
SB1070 may have many far-reaching effects. But one effect that is too little noticed is its conveyance of a “word windfall” to columnists, reporters and bloggers. And once the past week’s tragic events fade into memory, I am certain those writers will return their attention to the article-giving bosom of our state’s immigration regime.
In the past year, we’ve seen how much other states enjoy using Arizona, either as a cautionary tale or as a shining beacon of reverse-immigration (“Keep your tired, and your poor, and your huddled masses …”).
One sign that we remain the undisputed champion of state exemplars comes out of Florida this week. That state, like others, is considering enacting laws similar to Arizona’s (who said we don’t export anything?). It’s reported that a Florida state legislator has taken to wearing his passport to the lawmakers’ chamber. He wants to make the point that his Latino heritage is important, but his American citizenship should not be questioned.
The passport as a fashion and legal accessory—that could be the new big thing.
And for those of you traveling to our fair state who may have some concern about how welcome you will be, there are services that can apply for and procure your passport—fast. At least one service cites Arizona’s law as a reason to hire them.
So fear not. The attention of Americans may be fickle and fleeting, and our mild-mannered gun laws may occupy them for the moment. But to their minds, we remain, more than anything else, the “Show Us Your Papers” State.