Articles by: Rachel Winch
In August, Georgetown University appointed former Colombian president Álvaro Uribe as a "Distinguished Scholar," despite accusations that he had been behind serious human rights violations in his home country. While Uribe received a warm welcome from university officials, many students and faculty have not been so comfortable with his appointment, although it follows a history of Georgetown appointing powerful and controversial figures (including former Spanish prime minister José María Aznar) to posts as professors. On November 3, many rallied on the Georgetown campus against Uribe's appointment, and this culminated with law students handing the former Colombian president a subpoena.
On July 29, a federal judge issued a partial injunction stopping four of the most egregious provisions of Arizona's controversial new immigration law, SB-1070. However, that same day Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio quickly responded by saying "It doesn't matter what the ruling is by the federal judge," and along with a 200-strong posse swept into an immigrant community with the intent of arresting undocumented people. But while Arpaio’s customary bravado underscores the vigilante attitude running rampant in Arizona, what he doesn’t say is that he’s authorized to do his immigration sweeps not under Arizona state legislation, but federal law.
On April 23 Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed into law what is being billed as the "broadest and strictest immigration measure in generations." The law requires Arizona police to ask people for documentation based on a "reasonable suspicion" that they are in the country "unlawfully," it targets day laborers and their employers, and sets up trespassing charges for those in the state without correct immigration papers, for which they could face jail time. This harsh new law has not only ignited condemnation inside and outside of the United States, but also in Arizona where many have taken to the streets in protest.