Honza J. F. Prchal hits the nail right on the head. Bona fide political asylum is justified, and even required, in a civilized world, but somewhere the sympathetic line of demarcation for the unfortunates of humanity must be drawn in the sand (no pun intended to Iraq). No country can absorb the entire brunt of the suffering population of the world, as much as we might like to. The question I posed in my previous letter was, just because Mrs. Alvarado somehow managed to get "dry feet" (as the Cubanos call it), why should she, as an allegedly battered spouse, be singled out and given preference over bona fide political refugees in Africa or Korea, who hunger for the taste of freedom, denied them by ruthless and despotic dictators, not just a better economic life, or life away from an abusive husband, does not the door to Mrs. Alvarado's house swing both ways? Evidently it did, she left and came to the US - my question was, why the US, why not some place closer to home, where they speak her language, rather than a totally different culture and language? Well, the answer is, because the US lies at the end of the rainbow, right next to the pot of gold. And as long as the gold is here, they will come. The US cannot solve the problems of the entire world, not even one individual at a time. I feel a great deal of compassion for Mrs. Alvarez and others like her, both in the US and throughout the world. But the line must be drawn in political asylum, or you get what we have now, an overburdened and abused system. Chinese asylees anyone? Immigration lawyers and consultants in California will know what I mean. Yes, Mr. Prchal is correct about my assertion that political asylum should offer extraordinary relief in extraordinary times, not to provide the US as a dumping ground for every malcontent or mistreated person in the world. And if one, why not them all, I had asked, rhetorically, with tongue in cheek. And I wonder, just where Mark Trop believes the clog will occur in the "valve" because as Mr. Trop says " . . . the problems are not really resolved when we scream about the abuse of too much asylum." But for now, I believe we should close the valve and tighten our overly abused immigration system. Rewrite the laws to make them work for the US. Let law-abiders in and keep law breakers out. Respond to the needs of the times. Satisfy the needs of employers through lawful immigration and punish the scofflaws, both employers and aliens alike - don't discriminate. The US does not need illegal workers, it needs legal workers coming through a cogent immigration system of law that allows needed immigration. And don't repeat 1986, when the amnesty failed in its goals, but instead overburdened the immigration "system" to the point where it may never physically recover. Too simple, isn't it? Nothing in life is simple, not while immigration is a political football. Tennis, anyone?
David D. Murray, Esq.
Newport Beach, CA
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