The protesters are asking the Major League Baseball to move the 2011 All-Star Game to another state, unless the controversial law is revoked.
Activists from several DC-based organizations and individuals, demanded the Major League Baseball to move the All-Star Game out of Arizona. The rally was held last Friday June 18th before the game between DC's Nationals vs. Chicago's White Sox, which was attended by president Barack Obama.
This is my video of the protest, including opinions from baseball fans attending the game:
The MLB All-Star Game is scheduled to be played in Phoenix, Arizona, in 2011. But after the anti-immigrant law SB-1070 was signed by governor Jan Brewer, some say the game should be played somewhere else. Twenty eight percent of MLB players are immigrants, mostly from the Caribbean and South America,
The All-Stars Game could bring as much as $60 million dollars to the state's economy. By moving the game, the State's economy will be hurt. Presente.org says:
Now that Arizona has passed SB 1070, which essentially legalizes racial profiling, Latino players like Padres infielder Adrian Gonzalez are pledging not to attend the game. Let's support their stance and tell Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig to move the game unless Arizona changes the law.The protest was organized via Facebook by Reform Immigration For America "and allied organizations [...] We are going to show Obama that we want immigration reform in 2010. And we're telling Major League Baseball to move the All Star game out of Arizona in protest of the state's new immigration law."
One Peoples Project attended the rally and posted this:
The small group of demonstrators saw little opposition. Very few baseball fans objected to their presence, while far more were seen wearing RFIR decals that were passed out. One group of white men even yelled out "Fuck Arizona!" as they walked past the protest.This is a pic of one the banners, which was taken away by the stadium personnel withing a few minutes:
During the demonstration, two banner drops took place, one outside the stadium from the parking lot and one unveiled during the eighth inning inside as the game reading "MLB: Boycott AZ, Move the 2011 All-Star Game." President Obama, a White Sox fan, and who was called upon by the protestors in flyers to take action on immigration reform, attended the game.
During the rally I spoke with anti-racism activist Daryle Lamont Jenkins, co-founder and spokes person of One Peoples Project. Jenkins denounced that White supremacist groups are behind the SB-1070 law in Arizona:
Meanwhile, more organizations have joined a coalition to "Boycott Arizona" while governor Jan Brewer is asking her supporters to support the state's economy by shopping locally in Arizona, which economy depends tremendously in tourism and conventions.
This morning, ABC confirms that the White House will start a legal suit against Arizona, "for its immigration law, likely next week". Initially this was announced last Thursday by Secretary Hillary Clinton, during an interview with a TV station from Ecuador.
See more photos of the DC Nationals protest here.