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Dear Editor:
What Mr. Alexander's letter ignores about the permanent residency application procedures is that they are not at all that efficient or fair as a tool to work in the U.S. In the case of employment-based applications, Labor Certification is a cumbersome and unworkable process that could currently take anywhere from four to eight years to achieve permanent residency and at least two years to get a work permit. This is not because of stringent market tests and security checks, but a result of bureaucratic backlogs that have files sitting idle for years. Employers are not extremely interested in speeding up processing because this status quo very much prevents workers from switching employers. On the other hand, non-labor certification based applications, such as "extraordinary" and "exceptional" abilities, are inconsistent and unfair procedures. A player of the "Pan Flute of the Tibet" or a researcher on the "Proteins of the Left Eye of the Yellow Cow" can get it approved by overwhelming a clueless immigration caseworker with cryptic documents. And they are not fast either. Meanwhile, people that make actual economic contributions to the country in more common fields are left out because they are not "exceptional." The H-1B visa is the only open door for "real world" professionals that want to navigate the increasingly muddy waters of the green card application.

Washington, DC