Arizona is working extra hard to become the new Mississippi, circa 1960. The latest gambit? Banning ethnic studies classes, because according to that state’s school chief, such classes promote “the overthrow of the United States government” or “resentment toward a race or class of people” and turn Hispanic students into secessionists. Seriously. And …
[the bill] also disallows any curriculum that’s “designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group” or that seeks to “advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.”
Arizona’s superintendent for public instruction, Tom Horne, has said he’s backing the measure because ethnic-studies programs encourage “ethnic chauvinism”; he’s also suggested that such programs could breed secessionist sentiment among Hispanic students.
A legislator managed to get an amendment into the bill exempting teaching the Holocaust, lest that spark “resentment against another group of people.” Yeah, Jan Brewer’s definitely signing that one. It’s just tailor made for her. In other Crazy Arizona news, the Wall Street Journal reports:
The Arizona Department of Education recently began telling school districts that teachers whose spoken English it deems to be heavily accented or ungrammatical must be removed from classes for students still learning English.
State education officials say the move is intended to ensure that students with limited English have teachers who speak the language flawlessly. But some school principals and administrators say the department is imposing arbitrary fluency standards that could undermine students by thinning the ranks of experienced educators.
Now of course, the irony is that back in the 90s, Arizona expanded bilingual education, and recruited lots of Spanish speaking teachers to make it work, including some it recruited from outside the country. Then in 2000, the state passed one of its earliest Xenophobic laws, restricting all teaching to English. And voila! Oh, sorry, that was in French … Other goings on in the AZ legislature? Three words: human … animal … hybrids … God, these people almost make the Florida legislature look sane…
Meanwhile, the Major League Baseball Players Association has spoken out on Arizona’s “show me your papers” law, issuing the following statement from Executive Director Michael Weiner:
“The recent passage by Arizona of a new immigration law could have a negative impact on hundreds of Major League players who are citizens of countries other than the United States. These international players are very much a part of our national pastime and are important members of our Association. Their contributions to our sport have been invaluable, and their exploits have been witnessed, enjoyed and applauded by millions of Americans. All of them, as well as the Clubs for whom they play, have gone to great lengths to ensure full compliance with federal immigration law.
“The impact of the bill signed into law in Arizona last Friday is not limited to the players on one team. The international players on the Diamondbacks work and, with their families, reside in Arizona from April through September or October. In addition, during the season, hundreds of international players on opposing Major League teams travel to Arizona to play the Diamondbacks. And, the spring training homes of half of the 30 Major League teams are now in Arizona. All of these players, as well as their families, could be adversely affected, even though their presence in the United States is legal. Each of them must be ready to prove, at any time, his identity and the legality of his being in Arizona to any state or local official with suspicion of his immigration status. This law also may affect players who are U.S. citizens but are suspected by law enforcement of being of foreign descent.
“The Major League Baseball Players Association opposes this law as written. We hope that the law is repealed or modified promptly. If the current law goes into effect, the MLBPA will consider additional steps necessary to protect the rights and interests of our members.
“My statement reflects the institutional position of the Union. It was arrived at after consultation with our members and after consideration of their various views on this controversial subject.”
Good for them. Now let’s get that 2011 All-Star game moved out of Phoenix.
And now, just because it’s too good not to post, guess who’s thinking about running for Arizona governor? You guessed it. The guy with the neo-Nazi fan club, Crazy Joe Arpaio. You can’t make this stuff up.