Gabriel Arana

Gabriel Arana is a senior editor at The American Prospect. His articles on gay rights, immigration, and media have appeared in publications including The New Republic, The Nation, Salon, The Advocate, and The Daily Beast.

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Recent Articles

No Win in Arizona

Even if the courts rule that SB 1070 should not go into effect next week, the Obama administration has failed.

Protesters carry American and Mexican flags along a march calling for a boycott of Arizona. (Sipa Press via AP Images/Krista Kennell)
Today, a federal judge will hear arguments on whether Arizona's controversial "papers, please" immigration law, SB 1070, should go into effect next Thursday as planned. The Justice Department -- which is arguing that SB 1070 usurps the federal government's constitutional authority to regulate citizenship -- has asked for a preliminary injunction until the court can try the case. The hearing and subsequent decision represent the first major legal showdown over the divisive bill, which requires police to question people about their citizenship during routine encounters. Immigrant-rights supporters and the Hispanic community say it is a racially motivated attack on civil rights while proponents of SB 1070 argue it is necessary given the federal government's failure to "secure the borders." In typical conciliatory fashion, President Barack Obama has straddled the fence on immigration. By bringing the case, the administration is showing it sympathizes with the concerns of the immigrant and...

Tuesday Twitter Talk: Affirmative Action.

*/ @DanFosterNRO On poor white Christians, contra @AdamSerwer and @TimFernholz: @TimFernholz Wow, that's responding to any of our arguments with Douthat. @TimFernholz Adam specifically said, btb, and I concur, that increasing socioeconomic diversity from all racial backgrounds is critical. @TimFernholz And, incidentally, is your post an affirmation that diversity should be a factor in college admissions? @TimFernholz Also super-curious if feeling discriminated = actual discrimination only applies to white folks, or all groups? @DanFosterNRO feeling discriminated against becomes important when it warps our political discourse, black/white whatever. @DanFosterNRO idea is that it's something to be addressed, not that feelings alone can/should form basis of claims for political restitution @DanFosterNRO Not sure where you saw support for diversity agenda in my post. One can say AA fails on its own terms w/o supporting said terms. Follow the rest of...

Tuesday Twitter Talk: Abuse of Power.

*/ @reihansalam @willwilkinson really is very passive re: abuses of power that would shock @normative or @adamserwer, due to a cultural faith in authority. @AdamSerwer @reihansalam @willwilkinson whawetalkinbout? @reihansalam @AdamSerwer Attitudes towards the use and abuse of state power. @AdamSerwer @reihansalam @willwilkinson Porky's II is clearly an abuse of something

NOM's Maggie Gallagher for Big Government.

In response to last week's court ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which bars the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages performed in the states, anti-gay-marriage crusader Maggie Gallagher predictably called the proceedings a "sham trial" and the judge's decision a "moral outrage" and "intellectually absurd." Which is what Gallagher seems to say about every gay-rights trial that does not go her way. What's interesting about her comments on CBN is that she accuses the Massachusetts judge of defining "marriage" for the rest of the country: Nobody is saying that the state of Massachusetts doesn't have the right to define marriage for state purposes ... [But] what Massachusetts is now saying that they have the right to overturn and decide what the federal government defines as marriage. The more important point, however, is that this is not a case of a federal court in Massachusetts deciding what marriage means for the whole country; it's quite the...

Will SB 1070 Go Into Effect on July 29?

In response to the Justice Department's lawsuit [PDF] against Arizona and similar challenges from various civil-rights groups and law-enforcement agencies, Adam and I have noted that for all the outcry over its potential for civil-rights violations, the legal challenges to SB 1070 center around whether the state is pre-empting the federal government's constitutional authority to regulate immigration. This has led conservative commentators like the National Review 's Rich Lowry to question the "sincerity" of the administration's legal argument -- which, if you consider that the primary objective in court is to get a decision in your favor, is pretty naive -- and others to ask whether Obama is avoiding the race issue. But the most immediate consideration is whether the federal suit will prevail in its primary short-term objective: stopping the law from going into effect on July 29. In its initial legal filings, the Justice Department requested a preliminary injunction to do just that...