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As Kos discussed today on the front page, there is growing frustration within the immigration reform movement over a lack of real action.  This is a familiar sounding refrain that finds parallels in the LGBTI movement, among others.  What to do, what to do?  Well, when things get tough, the tough get marching.

At this point in time it appears that the coalitions formed around Comprehensive Immigration Reform are beginning to break apart.  That dream may be dying.  But there are still pieces of legislation that could be pushed forward right now.  This march will bring needed attention to immigration issues and perhaps push disparate parties back together.  Will you please join us in DC on March 21?

Here are 3 reasons to march:

  1. The Dream Act


Approximately 2.8 million students will graduate from US High Schools every year. Some will go on to college; others will join the military or take another path in life. But they will get the opportunity to test their dreams and live their American story. However, a group of about 65,000 students a year will not have this opportunity because they bear the inherited title of undocumented immigrant. These highly motivated individuals have lived in the United States all their lives and want nothing more than to be given the chance to become Americans.

The DREAM Act ‒ introduced by Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois and Rep. Howard Berman of California ‒ can solve this growing problem. Under the rigorous provisions of the DREAM Act, undocumented young people could be eligible for a conditional path to citizenship in exchange for completion of a college degree or two years of military service. Undocumented young people must also demonstrate good moral character to be eligible for and stay in conditional residency. At the end of the process, the young person can finally become an American citizen.

  1. The UAFA


The Uniting American Families Act (UAFA, H.R. 1024, S. 424) is a U.S. bill to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to eliminate discrimination in the immigration laws by permitting permanent partners of United States citizens and lawful permanent residents to obtain lawful permanent resident status in the same manner as spouses of citizens and lawful permanent residents and to penalize immigration fraud in connection with permanent partnerships.

It currently has 120 sponsors in the House and 23 in the Senate, more support than any other immigration bill currently before Congress.  As one half of a bi-national couple whose partner's visa expires next year, I can tell you the need to pass the UAFA is quite urgent.  This matters to me personally and over 36,000 couples nationwide.  By most measures this is actually an undercount as many same sex bi-national couples have already been forced to leave the country in order to stay together.

I am quite fortunate in that my partner is from the UK, with an EU passport, and we have some choice about where we might go after her visa expires.  I still hate the thought however, of having to leave behind my career, my friends and most importantly my family. Other couples are not so fortunate.  It's fairly common that couples will simply split up instead of going through the turmoil of emigrating to a different country.  I've even read horrible stories of people whose partners were killed after being forced to leave the country for locales that are less than friendly to LGBT people.

  1. Because Sometimes Telling’em to go to Hell is the Right Thing to Do

As in so many things there is a more colorful phrase in Spanish with which to convey the sentiment... and right about now it is often used to punctuate a conversation about the prospects of immigration reform, que se vaya a la ch_____ada madre! No, its not appropriate for polite conversation but after you’ve been lied to, betrayed and taken for granted one more time ...who wants to be polite? So tell the hijo de su.... What you really think of him and what you intend to do about it in November. This will have immediate consequences 1) it will make you feel better 2) it will panic the Democratic Party guy next to you who will try and convince you that you just don’t understand how hard it is, and 3) it will give you a chance to tell him that if he couldn’t do it with historic majorities in Congress maybe he can do more with less. Lots of people are doing more with less these days.

From "3 Reasons to March" at La Frontera Times, the post that inspired this diary

Let's give em hell!  We will not be ignored any longer.  More details about the March for America at http://reformimmigrationforamerica.o...

Originally posted to smellybeast on Fri Mar 12, 2010 at 02:22 PM PST.


Is immigration reform on your radar?

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