Welcome to the Thunderdome! Or at least the thunderblog. This is the inaugural edition of our Brawl of the Week. Every Friday we'll analyze the best political spat, neighborhood fight, or social pissing contest of the last seven days.
Seattleites are furious with Arizona for its new immigration law that basically tells cops to demand proof that you're here legally if you kinda look like someone who may have recently jumped a fence. Local politicians and advocacy groups are tripping over themselves to see who can show the most outrage.
Mayor Mike McGinn vowed not to travel to the state (which, judging by his complexion, isn't something he does frequently). And yesterday, representatives of Latino-centric social justice organizations El Comite and Casa Latina called for a boycott of businesses based in Arizona. So no eating at P.F. Chang's (headquartered in Phoenix).
So who landed the best hits? Let's get to the recap:Seattle's best punches:
* The law just doesn't pass the "is-it-racist?" gut check.
* Arizona may be on the wrong side of the Constitution, one of those documents right-wing crazies like to talk about so much.
* Chants in Spanish are so much more moving and poetic. "Si, se puede!"
Arizona's best punches:
* Seattle's influence over lawmakers in a state more than a thousand miles away is zero. Hell, we can't even push our own state legislature around.
* P.F. Chang's is delicious.
The odds-on favorite: Seattle politicians will show up at rallies and protests (including the big May Day March on Saturday) and give speeches where they awkwardly say something in Spanish. Then we'll congratulate ourselves for our progressive views before going back to fighting over tunnels and bridges.
Meantime, a handful of attorneys will do real battle against the law in the courts. The line in Vegas is 2 - 1 that it will fail the Constitutional sniff test. So Seattle won't exactly have won, but Arizona will lose. Immigrants there will go back to being treated by law enforcement with the same dignity they receive now--which probably isn't much.