With the controversial Arizona Immigration law set to go into effect tomorrow, opponents of the law are doubling their efforts to get others to boycott the state. The protests will culminate in a rally on Friday outside of Citi Field, just as the Mets get ready to play the Arizona Diamondbacks that night. Members of 1199SEIU, SEIU Local 32BJ, Latino Sports, the Latino Sports Writers Association, and the New York Immigration Coalition will gather outside the stadium at 6 p.m. and demand that the 2011 All-Star Game be moved out of Arizona. The 1199SEIU union insists, "The protest is not against the Diamondbacks as a team, although their owner is a heavy contributor to the Arizona state Republican Party which pushed through the bill."
The law authorizes Arizona police to demand proof of citizenship from anyone if they have "reasonable suspicion" that the person may be in the country illegally. Though officials say they in no way support racial profiling, critics, including President Obama, say the law's language is too vague to keep racial profiling from happening. Earlier this month, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit against Arizona, saying the federal government has "preeminent authority" over immigration.
Nearly 30% of MLB players are Latino, but not many have spoken out against the law. Local politicians, on the other hand, have been vocal. City Council members Jumani Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez were arrested for disorderly conduct after protesting outside 26 Federal Plaza, and Mayor Bloomberg said the country is committing "national suicide."