Josh Jones ENG 133-040 Mrs. Wagnon 26 February 2013 Harassing Illegals Legally? In the article, “Special Licenses for Immigrants Draw Protests in North Carolina,” by David Zucchino, he tells a story of a fight over driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants in North Carolina. The key issue with the license is that it has a pink stripe running across the top of the card, and a phrase saying “No Lawful Status,” as well as a restriction on the back reiterating the same fact.
Many people, including the author based on his biased sources, are opposed to this label and say that it is discriminatory and will provide a stigma to immigrants with this license. Supporting evidence is shown through a various number of sources, mainly the illegal immigrants themselves. These immigrants are protected under the deferred action program, which provides work permits and defers deportation for two years for immigrants brought into the country as children.
One immigrant, Cinthia Marroquin, who is a coordinator for an advocacy group, asks, “why make it so discriminatory,” and then says that they are trying to “out [illegal immigrants]. ” The American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina (ACLU) says that it is “unnecessary” and could “lead to harassment… and racial profiling. ” The Latin American Coalition in Charlotte says that it “would create a class of ‘inferior’ citizens,” considering that over 15,000 deferred-action applicants have been approved in North Carolina. The warrants coming with the claim are both explicit and implied.
When you look at the big picture, knowing how society reacts to labels, this label would invoke a negative stigma on anyone using or showing this card in public. The backing for this follows suit with all of the support. Other immigrants are opposing it, saying that they won’t be able to make purchases with checks, order a beer or get on an airplane using this as a form of ID. Even though Republicans typically are opposed to any issue favoring immigrants, Zucchino seems to put a spin on their legislature. The Red North Carolina legislature has temporarily suspended the bill in order to give time for legislators to block or limit the license.
Zucchino words this fact in a way to make it seem that even the very legislators that run this country, do not want this license to come to fruition for the same reasons as the immigrants themselves. A brief rebuttal comes in the form of a statement from a spokeswoman from the NC Department of Transportation. She claims that the design of the license stemmed from the state attorney general’s opinion. From there, the idea went through weeks of talks with federal and state agencies, and even advocacy groups. She says that this is all about the “individuals [being] able to get their driver’s licenses. ”