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Dear Editor:

I certainly do realize that families are being separated by the length of time it takes to process visas. However, what Pavla Cervova fails to consider is that mini-amnesties such as the issuance of Temporary Protected Status or 245(i) are a factor in why it now takes so long to get visas for family members. Every time Congress or the President decides to circumvent the usual immigration process by favoring a particular group, it makes MORE work for an already overburdened and poorly managed INS. Apparently, Ms. Cervova believes that somehow the INS (or any bureaucracy) is going to magically and speedily do this new work without shortchanging any of its usual functions. It definitely isn't so.

The practice of exceptions becoming the rule has to stop or the immigration situation will only get worse for those Ms. Cervova says she is interested in helping. (Or, perhaps she's only interested in helping her own relatives.) It will also result in a complete breakdown of any orderly immigration process as people realize that the "rules" only apply to those stupid enough to follow them.

Ali Alexander