Immigration Protests: An Act of Domestic Terrorism

Katie Pavlich

7/30/2010 12:47:00 PM - Katie Pavlich

It seems as though illegal immigration advocates will never be satisfied. After Judge Susan Bolton blocked the most controversial parts of SB 1070, essentially taking out all real power from the bill, a group known as "Freedom for Arizona," committed an act of domestic terrorism by spreading out over 15 tires connected by rope and covered in tar, a banner, brown paint and shards of broken glass across I-19 in Arizona, a busy interstate with a 65 mph speed limit covering approximatly 70 miles between Tucson and Nogales. This action not only stopped all traffic flow, but could have killed innocent people in the process.


The goal of the tires, glass and paint was to stop all deportations back to Mexico as well as stopping all capital flow to damage the economy. The banner placed across the interstate read, "Stop All Militarization! The Border is Illegal!"

The group took full responsibility for the closure on their blog, Resistance to SB1070: No Borders, No State No Papers:

Partial justice is no justice at all! Despite Judge ruling to block parts of SB 1070, racial-profiling, raids, deportations and the militarization of the border will continue unchallenged. This is why today we shut down Interstate 19 (I-19).

The group issued a statement on their blog the day before shutting down the freeway exposing their plan and claimed that land in Arizona is indiginous. 

The State of Arizona ruthlessly disrupts and terrorizes the lives of non-white communities on a daily basis. SB 1070 is yet another example of how migrants and people of color are criminalized. Today’s action is a declaration of resistance to the criminalization of affected communities and the militarization of indigenous land.

Neither SB 1070 nor the deployment of National Guard troops to the border do anything to address the root causes as to why people migrate. U.S. economic policies and wars have displaced and impoverished millions of people all over the world. Capital-driven policies, such as NAFTA, create poverty. These policies and laws not only consume and exploit land and people, but they also displace us from our homes, forcing us to migrate in order to survive. If policymakers were serious about stopping “illegal immigration,” they would end these capitalist exploitations and stop their military invasions abroad.

We want an end to the militarization of indigenous land, I.C.E. raids, deportations, the attacks on ethnic studies, violence against women and queer people, the expansion of prisons and immigration detention centers, empire, the border wall and the genocide at the Arizona-Sonora border that has claimed the lives of over 153 people during the first 8 months of this fiscal year alone.

Today we interrupt the flow of Arizona’s traffic to bring attention to the following points:

ABOLISH ALL OF SB 1070 AND OTHER ANTI-MIGRANT LAWS.

STOP ALL MILITARIZATION. NO NATIONAL GUARD TROOPS ON INDIGENOUS LAND.

BORDERS AND THE ARIZONA GOVERNMENT ARE ILLEGITIMATE.

NO HUMAN BEING IS ILLEGAL—THE ECONOMIC SYSTEM IS TO BLAME.

WE WANT RESPECT AND JUSTICE FOR ALL PEOPLE.

We affirm our dignity and promote the well-being of all people. We stand for solidarity, peace, self-determination and autonomy. We assert the rights of all people everywhere to feel safe and live free of oppression and state violence.

On top of that, according to the Arizona Daily Star, 13 people were arrested in downtown Tucson for blocking local streets. In Phoenix the Arizona Republic has reported at least 50 people were arrested for civil disobediance which included chaining themselves to one of the jails where Sheriff Joe Arpaio operates. 

But don't worry, the mainstream media and people with their head in the sand are calling the protests "mostly peaceful." Open border groups and immigration protestors are showing their true colors and proving this fight has nothing to do with SB 1070 and everything to do with these groups not wanting any enforcement of immigration policy whatsoever.

Photos courtesy of Tucson radio show host Jon Justice and IndyMedia

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