A group of Arizona state legislators is proposing a bill that would find charities in the state $1000 a day for helping to each refugee that they help to settle.
The Arizona Daily Sun reported, “Unable to block the federal government from sending refugees to Arizona, six Republican lawmakers want to penalize the charities that help them resettle here….The potentially more far-reaching part of her legislation would impose a fine on charities of $1,000 a day for each refugee it helps place in the state. And if a refugee is arrested, the charity would be financially liable for the cost of arrest, prosecution, and incarceration of that person. Burges conceded that she is using that approach because, realistically, it’s the only option available to her to stem the flow of refugees.”
The cruelty behind this legislation operates on numerous levels. Arizona Republicans are attempting to criminalize legal refugees, and are punishing non-profit organizations that are often strapped for cash with absurd fines for simply trying to fulfill their mission of helping people in need.
Many charities are faith-based and attempted to carry out the teachings of their religion by helping others. Those charities and non-religious organizations alike would see their good acts become crimes punishable with fines of $1000 per day per offense.
The heartlessness that has its epicenter at the White House is trickling down to the state level. If this legislation were passed, it would be the definition of a bad law that would be immediately challenged in court. Criminalizing charity is completely bigoted and misplaced.
Republicans are attempting to beat back a changing demographic tide by targeting refugees and immigrants with foolish and destructive laws. It won’t work. The change is coming, and all these proposed laws and executive orders are doing are revealing the true face of the Republican Party.