Bud Selig, Phil Jackson get it right on immigration law

This man actually had a clear and rational thought.

This man actually had a clear and rational thought.

Bud Selig is doing absolutely nothing again. Only this time he should be commended for it.

Many are pushing Selig to pull the baseball All-Star Game out of Phoenix next season because of Arizona’s new immigration law. Hey, it was bad enough when Selig mandated that the All-Star winner would get home field advantage in the World Series. But now some want an exhibition with a .190-hitter on the ballot (Ken Griffey Jr.) gets elevated to a major political platform?

Sorry. I understand sports and politics often mix. But if it says Braves-Phillies on the

Phil Jackson's take wasn't popular with protesters.

Phil Jackson's take wasn't popular with protesters.

marquee, I don’t want to walk through the turnstiles and get Red State-Blue State.

Athletics and politics often intersect. It’s unavoidable in the Olympics. It’s inevitable in professional sports when a high-profile athlete who wants to push his or her own agenda. But there’s a big difference between a league or team taking a public stand on something and an individual doing it. I don’t care where Major League Baseball stands on Arizona’s immigration law any more than I do where the New York Yankees stand on abortion.

The Phoenix Suns chose to wear commemorative “Los Suns” jerseys at a recent playoff game to protest for the immigration law. The NBA supported the Suns’ decision. No shock there. It was one more jersey the league could license and sell. Hardly the first time David

Just one more product for the NBA.

Just one more product for the NBA.

Stern sold out.

A sports columnist in Detroit attempted to draw a parallel between the NFL once stripping a Super Bowl from Arizona for not recognizing Martin Luther King’s birthday and the situation facing baseball. OK. Big difference. No.1, the last time I checked, Martin Luther King was actually an American citizen. He was the heart and soul of the civil rights movement. His birthday was a national holiday and observed in every state other than Arizona. How does that compare with the debate over whether to tighten immigration laws?

This issue came up again Monday. Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson released a statement that read, “I have respect for those who oppose the new Arizona immigration law, but I am wary of putting entire sports organizations in the middle of political controversies.”

This followed his previous comments: “I don’t think teams should get involved in the political stuff. … Where we stand as basketball teams, we should let that kind of play out and let the political end of that go where it’s going to go.”

He’s got it right. So does the baseball commissioner. Bud Selig: visionary.

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC and on Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

175 comments Add your comment

[...] Bud Selig, Phil Jackson get it right on immigration law [...]

tyler

May 17th, 2010
11:53 pm

Scrappy

May 17th, 2010
11:58 pm

Selig just proved that even a blind squirrel can find the occasional nut.

Gravy Train

May 17th, 2010
11:58 pm

Sports are supossed to be the equalizers. Once on the game begins all other social aspects should end other than a team working together for a common goal. The game itself should be the main focus. That is part of what makes sports so fun, you can lose yourself in the game. Maybe the world is junk outside of the lines, but inside of the lines all of that fades away, even if just for a few hours.

Gravy Train

May 17th, 2010
11:59 pm

Daggum typos!

CONFEDERATE DAWG

May 18th, 2010
12:04 am

HAVING HAD AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT HIT MY CAR AND NOT HAVE INS, I SAY PLEASE KINDLY GET THEIR ASSES OUT OF HERE. YES WE HOSED THE INDIANS IM SORRY BUT HALF THESE BUMS THINK THEY ARE IN A COLONY HERE. YOUR IN AMERICA GET AMERICAN OR GET OUT.

Chuck Uga

May 18th, 2010
12:13 am

File for citizenship. green card or something. Just file. Don’t like that? Then go back home. It’s as simple as that!

Only people who support amnesty for illegals are hard-core Democrats, Socialists, Communists, Marxists or some other type who want to see the United States collapse into chaos. In other words, the mentally ill. I included Democrats in this because they know if they can legalize millions with the stroke of a pen, the U.S will immediately become a one-party, Socialist State and kill the Republican Party.

laura

May 18th, 2010
12:28 am

omg these people think it’s THAT easy to become a citizen?! IM A DEMOCRAT AND PROUD OF IT!!! shame on you phoenix im soo embarrased for you.

Innocent Bystander

May 18th, 2010
12:55 am

Selig has typically been an embarrassingly poor commish, but he’s definitely right this time. Don’t change plans over some politics. Nice article JS, I hope you and your family are well.

wxwax

May 18th, 2010
12:59 am

Visionary?

Nonsense. Moral coward.

The right thing is for players union members to refuse to attend the All Star game. That’s right, no players. Many ballplayers are of Latin descent and susceptible to the profiling that will be going on in Arizona.

Screw Selig. Strike the game. Force his hand.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jeff Schultz. Jeff Schultz said: Bud Selig, Phil Jackson get it right on immigration law http://bit.ly/9kDlQx [...]

your dad

May 18th, 2010
1:10 am

is easy to blame, point finger, harras, but america is all about god, good life, enjoy, share, education, understanding.

this country is strong, it will be ok, it has had used illegal immigrants for decades and when they are unemployed, when they retire, when they get sick…they get nothing.

but all fat, pigs, selfish americans like me, are stupid white trash, thinking about ourselves and not thinking that they are people with feelings and needs.

you wonder why people hate us sooooo much in other part of the world…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..!

Len

May 18th, 2010
1:12 am

I agree with the Comis. I have one comment for you folks in California, you talk about boycotting AZ, I recommend that AZ boycott you in California and keep our electric power and our water here in AZ and see what you think of that. After all if you want to boycott us don’t buy our power or water.

your dad

May 18th, 2010
1:14 am

your dad

May 18th, 2010
1:17 am

all of you loving and sucking capitalisim in this column probably don’t make more than 8.50 per hour………..and sit to watch black and white, drinking cheap beer, long hair, yellow teeth, dirty finger nails,, not even living “AMERICAN DREAM……JA-JA-JA-” suck …ss

your dad

May 18th, 2010
1:19 am

sad

May 18th, 2010
1:33 am

this whole string makes me sad. jeff, why must you interject into this fray? if you thought they were right not to say/do something, then why did you write about it? david stern a sell out? one of the main things that has kept the nba together is david stern and here you go dismissing him because of a jersey?

my man, if you believe what you wrote, then you shouldn’t elevate the conversation anymore and shouldn’t have written the piece.

TheAntiMe

May 18th, 2010
1:36 am

Politics blow.

[...] immigration papers and gives police broad authority to check the papers of people they stop, …Bud Selig, Phil Jackson get it right on immigration lawAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)Activists protest Lakers Coach Phil Jackon's comments on [...]

Titus Andronicus

May 18th, 2010
1:47 am

Jeff, I’m disappointed.

I disagree with your thought process, but that’s the not the big thing to me. I disagree with you publishing an open blog about it.

You and the AJC have to be aware that any blog with such divisive topic are going to be filled with equally divisive comments. Most of the first few here are less about if it’s a good idea for Selig to keep mum than their personal thoughts about Arizona’s decision.

This is just a recipe for hatred. And you knew that as soon as you hit the button to publish the article.

Remarkable

May 18th, 2010
2:24 am

We need to talk about issues like this. We ignore the whole issue of ILLEGAL imigrants for years and it has gotten out of control. We need to offer those who are here Work Visas. Those who accept will work, get paid a decent wage, and pay taxes. Those who don’t accept it will be found one day and deported. If they commit a crime you can deport an illegal immigrant. Many of our hispanic residents if not most came here legally. They obtained legal status and can fear the initials IRS like the rest of us and not INS.
Sports has no place in this discussion. It is not for sports organizations to push political policy. As they say in baseball, “Play Ball.”

Rob

May 18th, 2010
2:42 am

Ever since the 1986 Amnesty Law, NO MORE ILLEGALS were allowed in OUR Country! PERIOD! What when wrong? The Amnesty LAWS were never enforced! 24 years of lawlessness since and you can see the results. Illegals actually believe they have a right to stay here and collect OUR Taxpayer benefits. They are supported by The Catholick Church, Mexican TV and radio, The Democratic Party, Chamber of Commerce`s and Liberal media etc. All Arizona is doing is enforcing what the Federal Government was supposed to be doing for the last 24 years! It`s really that simple!

Rob

May 18th, 2010
3:04 am

President Reagan passed the 1986 Amnesty which allowed 2.7 million illegals to stay in OUR country. In return, laws were passed to enforce immigration laws and deport any and all illegals sneaking into OUR country. But, congress failed to secure the border with a strong set of barriers and fences. Once these lawbreakers got past the Border Patrol, no enforcement went after them. They took any job they could and worked under the table. Most illegal income was mailed back to Mexico. In fact, that represents Mexico`s second largest source of income, with oil the #1 income. That`s why Mexico doesn`t want a fence to keep illegals in Mexico. We funded 700 miles of double layered fencing but only a few miles were completed. Congress stopped the funding in a late night vote that nobody knows about. People like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi stopped the building of the fence. I`m telling you, the more you learn about the truth and who is behind the next Amnesty push should frighten all Americans! Obama just got his illegal Aunt amnesty today! He wants all illegals to stay and one day become voters because he knows that if he promises them a “free lunch”, they will vote Democrat everytime! If that happens, America`s only hope will be for all Americans to vote these idiots out before it`s too late.

native

May 18th, 2010
3:26 am

phil jackson go back to europe

BravesAreDone

May 18th, 2010
4:34 am

A state is trying to actually enforce the law…what exactly is wrong with that anyways???

PCaffe

May 18th, 2010
5:07 am

Who would have thought that simply enforcing a law as opposed ignoring its existence would create such a clamor.
Can we just ignore the IRS, speeding tickets, any other laws?

Too bad that the written law has been distorted by the LA Mayor Antonio and by the leaders of the protests.
Racial profiling and arrests or stopping individuals will not happen unless they are breaking ANOTHER law.

The protesters keep disputing this but Phil Jackson is right.

The more that demands are being made by illegals and their “reps”, the more Americans are uniting. Most of us are tired of paying for the services that they have been receiving for free for so many years.

Today’s MVPS: Phil Jackson and AZ

Jerrell

May 18th, 2010
5:43 am

I agree. Let individual players, coaches, etc. make their decisions to speak out on whatever issue. Leagues, for the most part, need to stick to the entertainment business. Even the Super Bowl/MLK decision was wrong in my opinion.

Charlie

May 18th, 2010
6:47 am

Laura, Laura, Laura! Please read the Arizona bill before you make more of an ass of yourself! There is already a Federal law on the books dealing with illegal immigrants and the Arizona law doesn’t do anything to anyone that the Federal law is not allowed to do! The problem with the demontrators is not the law but the fact that IT’S FINALLY GOING TO BE ENFORCED! And to all of you Democrat nerds out there remember: This country is based on the rule of law. Illegal immigrants BROKE THE LAW the same way speeders do, bank robbers do, murderers do, wife beaters do, etc., etc., etc. They need to be deported. Period, end of story. If they want to live here, DO IT LEGALLY then I will have no problem!

John

May 18th, 2010
6:48 am

I’m 20 and if I can get arrested for having a beer immigrants should be arrested for being here illegally. illegal is illegal. ‘nough said

Nomo Stew

May 18th, 2010
6:49 am

From 1981-87, Republicans controlled the Presidency and the Congress, and they did nothing about illegal immigration. Why? because it’s actually the fat cats who run the Republican Party who benefit most from this steady supply of cheap labor. It’s easy to stop illegal immigration: harshly punish anyone who employs them. Contrary to rumors, most of them do come here to work. As with deficits and unsafe drilling, things that were just fine with the right when they were in power are suddenly awful and intolerable. None of that is a good reason to boycott AZ. But the rightist rants here are stupid and hypocritical. The left is concerned about the LEGAL immigrants who will get profiled as a result of this bill. It’s your rightist overlords who profit from the illegals, which is why they’d rather grandstand with divisive, racist hoo-haw than actually stop it.

Nomo Stew

May 18th, 2010
6:52 am

Oh, crap. I meant 2001-2007. Actually, 1981-87 is actually truer than people think, in that Repub;icans held the Senate and Presidency, and passed an AMNESTY bill and then the REpublican administration did not enforce the rest. That is, Republicans just waved a wand and accepted millions of illegals. But the really interesting period is 2001-07, when Republicans controlled everything and did nothing.

BIRDDAWGONE

May 18th, 2010
6:53 am

Why would you only stop at pulling the All-Star game? Why not all of the baseball games?
I think Jeff Schultz just did some reporting and I commend his for writing this article. Of course now he must live with being labled a racist.
We had a housing boom several years back. The only way to have a housing boom, is to need more new houses. Letting illigals into America helped to create this housing boom. Americans losing their jobs and being forced to work for less wages to compete with illegals helped to fuel the problem with sub-prime mortages (not to mention the same banks sending credit cards to the people who barely qualified for their mortage.)
But, I think all illegal immagrants should be to stay in the country. We have knowingly let them in to clean the toilets of rich people and to mow their yards etc.
Until we as a country decide put an end to illegal immigration, it just seems wrong to tell these people they must leave after we have used them.

Jacq Strap

May 18th, 2010
6:55 am

That’s right, Len. And to show you where I stand, I’m planning a Sedona get-a-way for next fall. God Bless You Great AZ Citizens.

And you Lib’s…….put-up or shut-up. If you’re soooooooo much more enlightened than us rubes here in GA, adopt an illegal family and YOU pay for their: schooling, food, medical…………

SupportArizona

May 18th, 2010
7:00 am

Kudos to selig and Jackson. The majority agree with this law as I do…If you aren’t illegal then you have nothign to worry about. I wished people would stop trying to reward law breakers.

jake

May 18th, 2010
7:01 am

Yo, Jeff…looks like you pulled in a deep thinker there with Confederate Dawg….

Buzz G

May 18th, 2010
7:14 am

It’s about time our politicians get some guts and Georgia passes a law just like Arizona’s. These illegal aliens are costing taxpayers a bundle. Illegal aliens hold low paying jobs with few benefits, create a burden on our schools, jails, court system, and hospital emergency rooms. Remember, illegal aliens are cheap only to their employer. Many of their costs are passed to the taxpayers, We taxpayers have shouldered this illegal burden too long.

Charlie

May 18th, 2010
7:17 am

Hey, Nomo Stew! Like I said to Laura…….READ THE DAMN LAW! Or are you to illiterate to read?It says it is ILLEGAL TO PROFILE ANYONE! The Democrats are the party that wants to allow all illegals to come here because they know they can count on them for VOTES! Get your facts straight.

wow..

May 18th, 2010
7:17 am

Los Suns? Someone needs to send the entire Phoenix Suns Organization back to Spanish class. el sol is spanish for sun. Another form of Spanglish in its finest form. If your gonna protest, at least do it grammatically right so no one thinks youre an idiot.

Dan

May 18th, 2010
7:25 am

Charlie why would you expect someone with an agenda to read the law? The AG didn’t even find it necessary to read the law before deriding it.
Remember for libs its all about appearence facts mean nothing

ghost of UGA VII

May 18th, 2010
7:29 am

Laura, wow, a good democrat, now I’ve heard it all. Why don’t you read the bill as Charlie pointed out before you make an ass of yourself? I assume you can read since you wrote a blog on here.
I wonder sometimes what the word illegal means anymore. Get the hell out of this country if you’re illegal. Become legal like so many americans in the past have and stay and be welcomed.

Damn liberals and democrats are ruining this country!!!

Southside

May 18th, 2010
7:30 am

It is a no win deal for any league or franchise to take sides in this cluster f–k. I agree with Jeff.

LJ

May 18th, 2010
7:45 am

Some of you BlowHards blame the Dems for the Illegal alien problems. Your Pres Reagan gave amnesty to all the wetbacks who were here when he was in charge. Your Pres Bush wanted to do the same. Bush started a Super Highway from Mexico to Canada that would allow all the Mexican trucks free access to our country. They would deliver all the goods that the traitor companies who moved there make with the cheap labor. If you people want to become another Mexico ,keep it up. I saw on a blog the other day, WHEN YOU ARE OUT OF A JOB & HUNGRY,EAT A TOYOTA

usnavyvolfaninva

May 18th, 2010
8:01 am

I actually agree with Nomo Stew on one point… it’s hard to ignore the fact that the Bush Administration did very little to stem the tide of illegal immigration, and it’s easy to understand why…. both major political parties see the latino vote as a crucial voting bloc, and they’re scared to death that if they start enforcing immigration policy, they’re gonna lose votes.
Look, if Gov Brewer were a Democrat, I’d still support her 100% for her courage to enforce the Federal laws, something the current administration and those past ones have failed time and time again to do.
Anyone who has actually read the AZ law (excludes AG Holder) understands that all this does is enforce laws already on the books. RACIAL PROFILING IS NOT ALLOWED under this law. But liberals keep wanting to cloud the issue by taking the word “illegal” out of “illegal immigration,” and demonize those who simply want to keep our country safe.

Morrus

May 18th, 2010
8:04 am

Curiously, in a supposed anti-incumbent year, most of the departing are not retiring but seeking higher office. We may recycle more than we replace. The bad news is that a frustrating 114 seats still have but one contestant. Two of them aren’t even incumbents, meaning they will affect state policy without being vetted by voters. And I have to think that we’d be better off if many had run instead for the Legislature — and cut down on the number running unopposed. Georgia’s problems are numerous. They aren’t going away. There’s too much stale thinking at the Capitol, on both sides of the aisle. New voices would be welcome.

Tha Real Fan

May 18th, 2010
8:04 am

Based upon your theory it seems you were against the NFL taking the Super Bowl out of AZ for their not recognizing the MLK birthday. That was sports and politics. States of exclusion should not be given opportunities to make money off Americans. Simple as that!

Walker, Texas Ranger

May 18th, 2010
8:05 am

Jeff, I totally agree. Imagine you are a player for the Suns and agree with Arizona. The team just forced you to do something against your views. I say keep sports & politics separate and lets not force a guy to be a roll model just because he is a pro athlete.

Tha Real Fan

May 18th, 2010
8:07 am

By the way when was the last time someone required you to have papers proving you’re a US citizen? Not your drivers liscense since that does not prove citizenship.

Tha Real Fan

May 18th, 2010
8:08 am

Walker, Texas Ranger-If your company forces you to do something against your views all you have to do is quit. You have principles after all, right?

Shug

May 18th, 2010
8:30 am

Mr. Schultz, because of your fine article I shall cease criticizing anything you write for the next month, unless I feel otherwise.

The Real Fan, please excuse yourself from further comments. You have proven your ignorance.

Seriously, Jeff

May 18th, 2010
8:33 am

“…the last time I checked, Martin Luther King was actually an American citizen.”

Jeff, the Arizona law actually affects American citizens, which is part of the outrage. You do realize that there are Hispanic Americans, right?

I also think that MLB should pull the All Star game from Arizona if the law doesn’t change. The game can easily be played in 31 other venues, and the fans outside of Arizona wouldn’t care. But, the state of Arizona would certainly miss the millions upon millions of dollars that come with hosting an all star game.