Yet another Arizona-style immigration bill is moving forward in the South, this time in Mississippi, where members of of the state House approved a strict anti-illegal immigration bill early Thursday. And within hours, at a college basketball tournament game between the University of Southern Mississippi and Kansas State yesterday, members of the Southern Miss Band were chanting "Where's your green card?" at a Puerto Rican-born player from the other team.
Never mind that Puerto Ricans don't need green cards, since they are automatically U.S. citizens at birth. The exchange, by now widely reported, highlights the tension surrounding immigration that's been brewing in Mississippi and surrounding states, including neighboring Alabama, which enacted a similar law in September.
Earlier this month, a Southern Poverty Law Center report that tracked calls to a hotline set up after the Alabama law took effect suggested rising discrimination against Latinos, including taunts of "go back to Mexico" hurled at U.S. citizens. One citizen complained of being asked to provide “American” identification at a store while making a purchase.