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Should Arizona deport Siberian huskies?

Cooling my heels in Phoenix, I’ve been trying to catch up with the latest on SB 1070, the new legislation that will turn Arizona’s police officers into immigration officials, requiring them to check the citizenship of anyone they confront in the course of their duties.

The law makes violating federal immigration laws a state crime, if that makes any sense, and some fear it will lead to large scale profiling and deportations as Arizona takes into its own hands matters it feels the federal government isn’t addressing.

Of course, the law applies to humans, and not dogs, but what if? What if the motivation for it — to keep undocumented foreigners from the shores of a country pretty much built by undocumented foreigners — was applied to the dog kingdom?

What if all the Irish setters –or at least those who lacked the proper paperwork — were sent back to Ireland; or if all the German shepherds were deported to Germany; or if Labrador retrievers, Tibetan Mastiffs, French poodles and Afghan hounds were all sent back to their place of origin?

The dog kingdom would be a much more boring place.

If all of them were required to live where they originated, we wouldn’t have anywhere near the magnificent diversity of dog breeds — not to mention hybrids and mutts — that we enjoy today. It would be so long, Welsh Corgi; seeya, Belgian Malinois; goodbye, Bo, and all other Portuguese water dogs.

Go back to Rhodesia, you Ridgebacks.

Probably, in our haste, we’d even deport Great Danes to Denmark, even though the breed didn’t originate there. (Once local law enforcement and state bureaucracies get involved, mistakes are bound to happen.) And, Siberian huskies, you don’t even want to think about where you’d be banished to.

A valid argument can be made that Siberian huskies shouldn’t be living in Arizona’s heat in the first place – but banishing them, or pestering them for their paperwork so often they decide to leave, obviously isn’t the solution.

If that were the case, I never would have met Sasha and Kodi, brother and sister huskies belonging to Sandy Fairall, who we hung out with yesterday at “Bark Place,” the dog park at Quail Run Park in Mesa.

No pedigree is required to enter, and dogs of all sizes, shapes, backgrounds and colors were playing together nicely. No one was asking anyone else to leave, no one was questioning anyone else’s pedigree, and everyone, dog and human, seemed happy to share the shady spots.

Sandy admits Phoenix is not an ideal locale for the cold weather dogs – something she’s reminded of whenever she heads to the mountains in winter to let them experience their more natural surroundings and play in the snow.

But they seem to be thriving and happy to be here. They seem to have adjusted. They haven’t taken anyone’s job, committed any crimes or put undue strain on the health care system.

I say – paperwork or not — let them stay.

Comments

Comment from Arthur Throckmorton
Time June 24, 2010 at 12:03 am

“SB 1070…requires them (law enforcement) to check the citizenship of anyone they confront in the course of their duties.” This is an outright lie. Only after someone is stopped for a lawful reason AND it is then suspected the individual may not be legally in the United States can a peace officer request proof of residency. Not being able to produce a valid drivers license or social security card would be a pretty good indication said individual might not be a legal resident.

“Arizona … feels the federal government isn’t addressing.” (illegal immigration) Could it be any more obvious the Federal Government has not secured our borders, even since the last “comprehensive immigration reform” and amnesty was granted during the Reagan administration?

No, Sandy’s Siberian huskies “haven’t taken anyone’s job, committed any crimes or put undue strain on the health care system.” However illegal aliens from every country in the world do all of these things in the United States, because our Federal Government, tasked with protecting our borders, is not doing their job!

The comparison of dogs to illegal immigrants is a huge stretch. Would mandatory spay and neuter laws then apply too? It’s a serious societal issue and deserves to be debated as such.

Comment from Marjorie Garcia
Time June 24, 2010 at 3:27 pm

Obviously the humor in this article was lost on Arthur.

Comment from Anne’n'Spencer
Time June 24, 2010 at 11:30 pm

Sigh. I sometimes think that lack of a sense of humor should be punishable by a fine, imprisonment, or banishment. As I think about it, my own emigrant ancestor arrived in Virginia from England in 1635, and we’ve been multiplying and infesting this area ever since. My spouse’s emigrant ancestor arrived here in the late 1800′s under extremely questionable circumstances. He’d been tried, convicted, and sentenced to hang in his native Sweden for smuggling and piracy. He had somebody sell his ship, used the money for some judicious bribes, caught the next boat to the Land of the Free, changed his name to something Anglo-Saxon sounding, and never looked back. One way or another, we’re all immigrants, just like our dogs.

Comment from jwoestendiek
Time June 25, 2010 at 9:24 am

Ann, Maybe passing a sense of humor test should be a condition of getting one’s American citizenship. But then should we kick out those who lack one? Tempting, but probably not. In any case, in this country, at this time, it sure helps to have one.

Comment from Anne’n'Spencer
Time June 25, 2010 at 4:57 pm

I’m laughing because on my iGoogle home page, just under my RSS feed for ohmidog!, I have a “quote for the day.” Today’s quote: “Illegal aliens have always been a problem in the United States. Ask any Indian.”
Robert Orben

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