Apparently due to the importance of immigrants in the upcoming elections, there are signs that 245(i) might be extended and that there will be talk about a possible amnesty of illegal immigrants; however, is there any initiative to help those who have started their immigration process following the legal path and are caught in the surreal bureaucratic quagmire of the BCIS department, previously known as INS ?
My situation is not unique; it is probably a repeat of the prolongued anguish that many foreign professionals who intend to immigrate are suffering due to the long wait and stark inefficiency of the immigration bureau. I was transferred from a branch of a major oil service company in my home country to their main office in Houston 7 yeas ago; I have been working here legally by a combination of intracompany transfer visas (L1) and H1. They started my immigration process by filing a petition for a Labor Certificate in 2001; now, the DOL is still processing year 2000 applications; so I will probably have to wait three years just to get an LC add 2 more years at the BCIS, in the best of cases, to finally get a green card. During this 5 year period, I will have to pray vehemently that the company that initiated the process does not lay me off; since then all the effort will be lost and I will have a few days to pack up and meekly come back home. Now, my question:
How can it be possible that an illegal undocumented worker will probably have better chances of becoming a permanent resident in the next five years than those that are following all that is required by the law and are still patiently waiting ? Where is the fairness, where is the logic? I will not endanger my family by becoming an illegal; but jokingly my co-workers have pointed that as a possible solution.
I know that AILA has been instrumental in advancing laws to help immigrants but I see too much of an emphasis on the situations of illegal aliens (no, the word alien does not offend me, I am a legal alien); and the politicians are paying attention mainly because of the potential electoral gains and not out of compassion.
My case is absurd but it is even more so when American citizens have to be separated from close relatives for many months and even years while processing their permanent residence.
Am I against legalization? Certainly not; but priorities should be logically and in fairness set.
Deportation? Let me do some arithmetic the F.A.I.R way: Let's have as a goal cleaning out the country of 8 million aliens (not from Mars) in one year. That makes about 22,000 a day; they can be transported as cargo in oil tankers. They do not need much air; they come here in air tight trailers, don't they? This way the cost of repatriating these noxious vermins will be minimal, at the same expense of sending cattle oversea, what will that be? $1000? This does not count any legal expense: yes, this can be done summarily: a general blanket deportation, no due process required. Are amnesties not done this way? And the total cost is $8 billion (8.0E06*1000). Too much money? Bah, how much do we spend in any war in foreign shores? This a war in our midst, even more justified.
Leaving the exercise there: People, we are taking here about a workforce created by an economy that is fueled by people and goods consumption at a rate never seen before; an economy that had such a growth that generated many jobs that these workers filled in; and now because the economy dwindled you just want to throw them out?
These are sad times when immigrants and tourists have to be dealt as terrorists.
"War makes fools of us all. The rest it kills".
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