The debate about what to do about immigration problems is a big issue in Utah and other states. Â St. George’s newspaper, the Spectrum has reported that Stephen Sandstrom, a Republican from Orem is sponsoring a bill that
would allow local law enforcement to check people’s residency or citizenship status if officers have “reasonable suspicion” they have entered the country illegally. It would also allow for a warrantless arrest if an officer has a “reasonable suspicion” that the person they are facing is here illegally.
It seems to be modeled after the controversial Arizona law. Â Some Latino activists are upset with the proposed bill. Â Many opponents of Sandstrom’s bill have been unhappy about this heavy-handed approach to immigration problems, and have reminded him that the LDS church has supported the principles of the Utah Compact, a document that says,
We must adopt a humane approach to this reality, reflecting our unique culture, history and spirit of inclusion. The way we treat immigrants will say more about us as a free society and less about our immigrant neighbors. Utah should always be a place that welcomes people of goodwill.
The LDS Church has endorsed the Utah Compact, and theÂ New York Times supports the Utah Compact. Â Some Latino activists would like the church to do more. Â They would like the LDS church to help influence Mormons (such as Sandstrom) to embrace less hostile forms of legislation. Â The Salt Lake Tribune is reporting that Raul Lopez-Vargas
A former vice president of a local community group has penned a letter to Mexican President Felipe CalderÃ³n seeking the temporary suspension of visas issued to Mormon missionaries in response to his view the LDS Church hasnâ€™t stood tough against Utah-based immigration reform bills.
There are those that think the LDS church should not be involved in any politics, from gay marriage to immigration. Â Yet sometimes they are pulled into the fray. Â What do you think? Â Is such a position tenable, when the LDS church must work with foreign governments for missionary work?