I don't know a lot about immigration or the citizenship process, but can someone tell me reasonably why this person would be here for 30 years and not have gotten their citizenship in that time?
**ITT**: People who have never had to deal with green cards, citizenship, or ICE yet know *all* about it.
* Illegal immigrants can't be deported when they're kids, because they're just kids and that isn't fair.
* Illegal immigrants can't be deported when they grow up because they've been here a long time and that isn't fair.
I'm an American citizen, and my parents are American citizens, but my relatives on my father's side are from Venezuela. Venezuela is in crisis right now and has been in a terrible state for at least the last 15 years. These relatives have wanted to come to the US for YEARS. They never came here illegally because they are law abiding, even though their country is in a terrible position. They filed to become American citizens almost 10 years ago now and we are waiting. Why should people who came to the US illegally, circumventing the law, essentially punishing others who go through the proper channels? It sucks that that man's family is being ripped apart by him being forced to go back to Mexico, but he had every opportunity to leave once he was of-age. He had to know at some point that he was an illegal immigrant and he should have taken steps to resolve that. If he was here illegally, yes, it sucks to have to leave, but he was here illegally.
It's expensive, emotionally and fiscally for people in this situation to try and fix their status. Hovering above your head every day of your life is a choice. Fix your status and risk a ten year ban, missing the formative years of your children's life or struggle on and hope a less ridiculous choice becomes available.
Immigration is not a simple crime and it has no simple fix.
It's incredibly complex and compounded by just how hopeless and impossible immigration courts and laws are. Marrying a citizen doesn't matter. Tens of thousands of dollars doesn't just magically drop out of thin air to pay lawyers and fees. Your kids will not understand why you had to leave the country. Your home country will not just build you a new life if you decide to 'get in line' and if you do get in line you're going to need more money and time. Every time you deal with a government agency, the police, firemen, social workers... Every second of every day and every action you take is darkened by a cloud of physical removal from your family with almost no remedy or no recourse that doesn't risk ruining the lives of your family. This is not a recipe for sound immigration policy or strict adherence to the law. It creates crime, abuse and slavery. Prohibition always creates more problems than it solves, always. The severity of the punishment does not fit the crime, nor does the collateral damage. We should not punish kids for the sins of their parents.
I have an honest question and searching through these comments is not helping. Why has he not done what it takes to become a citizen at this point? I do not claim to know anything about it so I am curious as how it all works.
Immigration is a tough paradox. On the one hand, a society needs to have laws and it's not fair or sensible to blindly accept everyone who breaks into our country, especially when plenty of people have been waiting in line for years to immigrate legally.
On the other hand, which of us would want to live in countries overrun with drugs, anarchy, and poverty? I'd like to think I would do things the legal way -- but which of us isn't ultimately out for his or her own skin? I don't have to worry about America's immigration laws because I had the good fortune to be born here -- but you can bet your ass that I would not choose the sanctity of law over my own skin. That's part of what makes me American anyway, goddammit.
My point is this -- there's too much sanctimony on either side, and it's so loud that those of us trying to figure it out to fix it can't hear ourselves think.
That said, I think that the right solution is mandatory military service. If you can climb Trump's wall, we'll give you a gun and you can spend five years defending our freedom. Do that, and it can be your freedom.
Edit: FYI -- I am a moderate who votes third party. I didn't vote for Trump, and it speaks to the off-putting, dare I say "typical," sanctimony of far-left snowflakes that I am being made out to be a facist. Referencing Trump especially in tongue-in-cheek doesn't make me right wing.
Also, I am not saying it's a good idea to hold open recruitment across the globe -- I'm proposing that we secure the border first, and offer military service as a way for existing illegals to avoid deportation. I certainly support reforming the legal path to citizenship alongside it.
Why not at least try it, since nothing else is working? If you don't like my idea, offer a different one. If not, find some vaseline, wet your hand, and fuck right off. No one needs your voice if you are going to complain without a solution.
So, we should continue to turn a blind eye to illegal immigrants, thus encouraging more to follow in their footsteps?
I feel bad that this man was brought here as a child, but once he became an adult he could have followed the rules, left and tried to come back legally. His parents put him in an unfortunate spot, and he decided to expose his children to that exact same risk by having them while being here illegally.
You can argue about immigration law all you’d like, but this man put himself in this position, and not deporting him will lead to more people choosing to do the exact same thing.