Bajazona's birth: Birkenstocks, popsicles, no-high zones

2011-03-19T00:00:00Z Bajazona's birth: Birkenstocks, popsicles, no-high zonesDavid Fitzsimmons Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
March 19, 2011 12:00 am  • 

On Nov 5, 2012, the Secession Initiative passes by an overwhelming majority in Pima County. In exit polling 27 percent of voters concede they have no idea what secession is.

On to what unfolds.

• At a press conference Gov. Jan Brewer asks, "What is the matter with you Tucsonans? Have you all gone crazy?" Unaware the mic is still hot, she snorts to an aide, "I've been to Tucson. They're all potheads on welfare harboring illegals. If it wasn't for Phoenix, Tucson would be a wasteland. I'm glad we're dismantling their university. Go Sun Devils!"

• Senate President Russell Pearce blames drugs and illegal immigrants for "this outrageous behavior coming from the Berkeley of Arizona." Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio offers to "round up the lot of them" and with the help of Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu begins building a tent city just across the county line.

• The Department of Public Safety arrives at the home of the Free Baja founding father, Hugh Holub. A media circus is under way on the sidewalk. A Mexican-flag burner lights up next to La Raza students chanting "Aztlan! Aztlan!" Area man Joe Sweeney announces his candidacy for King of Baja.

• Protesters assemble outside of the state building on Congress Street. "FreeTucson!" "Honk if you hate Phoenix" and "Free Baja Now" signs and banners are everywhere. Republican Bruce Ash is across the street shouting, "What about Obamacare and Muslims?"

• Tucson police report the crowd is initially well-behaved. Counter-protesters stirred up by a local talk radio hosts Timmy Truth and Jon Justice wade into the crowd wielding walkers, oxygen tanks and American flags. A melee follows as Tucson meets itself. Pro-Baja protesters overwhelm security, windows are broken and the governor's Tucson office is trashed. Brewer's prized autographed photos of Donny Osmond and Sarah Palin sail out the window.

• Brewer issues an order for "mass arrests of suspected deciders and I declare martial law to be what is good to be done for Arizona. I want my signed picture of Sarah back."

• The Legislature in Phoenix passes a bill denying citizenship to anyone born in Pima County and prohibiting Tucsonans from possessing sparklers or fluorescent lightbulbs.

• A new flag appears at the rallies. Sewn by Betsy Ross Rodriguez of Barrio Historico, the design depicts a saguaro encircled by a rainbow. Rodriguez says, "The saguaro is a symbol of strength, conservation and endurance. The rainbow embodies our diversity and our spirit of hope. Viva Bajazona!" The next day after the broadcast of the interview on local television the third-generation Tucsonan is beaten by a mob calling her a "dirty illegal."

• State Sens. Al Melvin and Frank Antenori, dressed in Special Ops camouflage and with their faces painted black, move to Phoenix under cover of darkness. Taking the old Pinal Parkway, they survive by eating the varmints Antenori hunts at night.

• A bilingual "Declaration of Independence from Maricopa County" is read and signed under the courthouse's arches. At the Presidio site costumed soldiers fire a ceremonial cannon and the flag of "Bajazona" is raised. Lightning from a nearby monsoon storm hits the flagpole, fries the flag, electrifies the cannon and blows the tricorne off of one of the costumed soldiers.

• Hundreds of unarmed Bajazonans march toward Phoenix carrying their declaration of independence, bottles of Perrier and a list of demands. Brewer calls out the National Guard after a long uncomfortable pause when she forgets who she is calling out and why. Calling the rebels "Bozonans" doesn't help at this point.

• The only skirmish between the state of Arizona and the Bajazona rebels takes place at Picacho Peak. Beanbags and Frisbees fly. Fighting halts when a militia member loses his earring and notes his Birkenstock strap is broken.

• Delegates gather in the courthouse and begin work on the constitution of the 51st state in sweltering summer heat. When an ice cream truck is heard coming down the street, the delegates hurriedly sign their constitution and run to buy popsicles.

• President Obama calls for an armistice after consulting with the United Nations, NATO and Oprah, who impresses him with her knowledge of the region because she once stayed at Miraval. Designed to "totally bum the rebels" a no-high zone is put in place. A flustered Brewer calls for Obama to present a birth certificate or shut the hell up. She tells the press she'll be in the "situation room" and turns around and accidentally marches into a closet, slamming the door behind her.

• U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva submits a statehood bill for "Bajazona." It passes when it is attached as a rider to a bill mandating "all American flags made in the USA be flame retardant." No one in Congress dares to vote against the bill.

• On Feb. 14th, 2014, Bajazona becomes the 51st state. Its motto is "Si se puede." Huge numbers of refugees called "rationals" pour in from Arizona to the north seeking asylum from "the asylum." Residents of SaddleBrooke and Green Valley begin a secession movement that is crushed when their water is turned off.

• At a joint press conference, Bajazona's newly elected Attorney General Clarence Dupnik describes Bajazona as "a mecca for brotherly love and the finest Sonoran hot dogs in the world." He is followed by Senate President-elect Steve Kozachik who soberly declares Bajazona "a sovereign state and Tucson its capital."

• The first Legislature meets in Centennial Hall's gun-free zone. Gov. Ann-Eve Pedersen gavels the first session to order. The Legislature's first act is to designate the official state weapon of Bajazona: the human mind. A rim-shot emanates from the orchestra pit and is designated the official song.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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