For those who think that the anti-immigration groups are benign and simply want better enforcement of our immigration laws, consider what has just happened in Utah, a state that is as active as Arizona when it comes to passing anti-immigration measures, but has not been getting the same press.
State agencies are investigating whether any of their employees leaked Social Security numbers and other personal information after a list of 1,300 people who an anonymous group claims are illegal immigrants was circulated around Utah.
The anonymous group mailed the list to several media outlets, law enforcement agencies and others this week, frightening the state's Latino community. A letter accompanying the list demanded that those on it be deported immediately.
The list also contains highly detailed personal information such as Social Security numbers, birth dates, workplaces, addresses and phone numbers. Names of children are included, along with due dates of pregnant women on the list.
In the April letter, the writers say their group "observes these individuals in our neighborhoods, driving on our streets, working in our stores, attending our schools and entering our public welfare buildings."
"We then spend the time and effort needed to gather information along with legal Mexican nationals who infiltrate their social networks and help us obtain the necessary information we need to add them to our list," the letter says.
This is the kind of thing you expect to hear about in a totalitarian state. Those claiming that immigrants are turning America in to a place they don't recognize might be right. But it's not because of the immigrants themselves. It's how anti-immigrant actions like this one in Utah are no longer shocking to the sensibilities of many in this country.