Heather Mac Donald on "the increasingly surreal hysteria over the Arizona immigration law":
The two main lines of attack against SB 1070 — that it is preempted by federal immigration laws and that it will lead to racial profiling — make sense only if you believe that we should not be enforcing our immigration laws.As to the second objection:
Putting state resources behind immigration enforcement interferes with federal enforcement only if it is federal policy not to enforce the immigration laws. Without question, more people will be picked up in Arizona for being in the country illegally with SB 1070 than would have been picked up without SB 1070. . . .
That is SB 1070’s only effect. Opponents of SB 1070 can argue that a state’s detection of illegal aliens conflicts with federal policy only if it is federal policy that those illegal aliens never be subjected to the immigration laws in the first place. . . .
There is a greater chance that a legal-alien Hispanic in Arizona driving without his license could have a question asked of him regarding his immigration status during a stop than a native-born Anglo driving without his license. According to the illegal-alien lobby, that possibility renders the law unconstitutional and a fundamental assault on human rights. . . .Which is, I gather, the goal of SB 1070's opponents.
[I]f the possibility that a lawfully resident alien or person of ethnic ancestry may be asked a question about his status is unconstitutional, then we can’t have any immigration enforcement at all.