Legally Coming to America: Why Aren't Honest, Law Abiding People Welcomed?

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Okay, so I had a blog all worked up in my head about cannibalism, but then I read the more recent comments on my previous blog and felt my blood begin to boil. And not at the commenters, but at what they revealed to me that I’d not known. Now I have my naive moments, and I certainly don’t know everything about . . . well, anything, but I do know something about a lot of things, and one thing I am absolutely certain about is that when it comes to immigration and issuing tourist visas, our country has it all screwed up.

Now, my blog title is a bit of an over the toppism, and I do know that, but I’ve been boiling over lately as I think about Tally waiting over a year, jumping through numerous hoops (interviews, applications, medical checks, background checks, etc.) to emigrate to the U. S. to be with the man she loves. Okay, just that bit doesn’t boil me over so much as watching the May Day stuff on television and knowing that she’s waiting patiently, doing all the necessary legal things and knowing that I’m personifying a far greater problem in her (how many thousands must there be, waiting and waiting?). All while illegal immigrants prance around in our streets with signs declaring themselves illegal and not being kicked out immediately. I’m not sure, but if a criminal waltzes around with a sign saying “I’m a pedophile” or “I’m a tax dodger” can’t someone at least look into it, maybe see if there’s a crime and then prosecute?

But of course we’ve got illegal immigration issues here, don’t we? And I’ve (of course) blogged my say on it. Just a quick look at the controversy:

There are millions of illegal immigrants in this country right now, and according to some, they are the only thing that keeps our economy afloat. In part because they will do jobs that (supposedly) Americans won’t do (which is just not true, Americans would do the jobs just NOT for below the federally mandated minimum wage and benefits–um, they won’t do the jobs illegally, in other words), and in part because there are so many here that they’ve wiggled their way into our economic infrastructure.

Our borders are ridiculously easy to cross (how else to explain all the illegals?), and our visa / INS system has LONG been broken. Do we look to fixing those? Sort of. Or do we look at fixing problems of benefits and protections going to people who do not pay taxes for them, who do not have a right to them? Well, they demand our rights, they demand citizenship. And some people want to give it to them in the form of an amnesty bill; this bill is in its second or third incarnation now, but it’s essentially saying that everyone here illegally will be grandfathered into the country providing they pay some kind of fine or tax.

Between our illegal immigration problem and our far more recent national security problem, we’ve apparently made it all but impossible for people to visit this country legally. These are the two narratives that sparked this blog (btw, I would never post anything sent to me privately, at least not without first getting permission to do so, these were publicly posted on my previous blog):

From Fanta:

The first time I went to visit the land of the free was no problem. I lived and worked in Sydney at the time, so I got a visitors visa there, no problem.

But two years ago, when I worked in China I wanted to get a visa and I was utterly humiliated and denied one after they made me wait in a freezing room for more than five hours. Apparently it was because my passport was full of foreign visas, which looked out of place to the people working at this consulate in Shanghai. I only wanted to pop over with my husband to visit his parents who have been living in the States for twenty years, and we just happened to have a two weeks gap between jobs. The whole family was so excited, at the time they haven’t seen each other for seven years (which is nine by now). Hubby refuses to go to visit without me, so they will probably never see each-other, as my passport is still pretty full with visas.

The questions went like this:
What did you do in Taiwan? Why were you in Germany? Why did you get married in Australia? Why not in Ireland if your husband is Irish? What about Sweden? Why do you apply for a visa in China? How come you are a rep. of a German company if you are not traveling on a German passport? Why do you have a Hungarian citizenship if you were not born there? And so on. The info in my passport was too much for them to digest. I had steam coming out my ears, believe me.

I have always been a hard worker, and it just happened that I ended up being a rep. for the company I work for in Germany, which ultimately meant traveling purely for work and always always legally. After this scenario I even stopped buying Californian wine, which I loved before hand.

I love Europe, and I would never give it up to live the Land of the Free. And one day (in five years time)when my current passport expires and will get a brand new one, I will try to apply again. Not because I really want to go there, but because I want to see my hubby hug his Mom again after so many years, I want to see them cry from happiness. Till that day comes, they have to stick to the phone:)

And from Jenia:

Sorry that u had to face it, and u did right that u spoke up! I would do the same. Actually, I ALWAYS do cuz it’s a common thing in every russian store. In fact, there r way too many ignorant people here, and it’s driving me crazyyyy cuz I know things won’t change in this country for a while. U mentioned one more thing I have to comment on – US visa issue. it’s weird, but from what I know it’s pretty easy for the people who want to immigrate illegally to get to yr country, but simple tourists like me and my friends who want to come spend vacation in LA or NY and leave some cash there face way too many problems. I wanted to visit yr country long time but I don’t, cuz I aint gonna have them doing my damn fingerprints in the embassy then have some ol’ dirty bustard officer interviewing me with question like “now prove me that u won’t give up yr family, real estates, job etc in Russia for being a slut serving US citizens??” U probably think I’m joking but I’m not, that’s what one of my friends was asked, and when she yelled at the officer this a**hole rejected her visa request! it’s even more upsetting considering the fact that’s yr governnment thing… and that ordinary americans have nothing to do with it. So hun, ever thought to blog on the issue lol?

Now anyone who reads my blog will know that I practically worship Fanta for her fantastic talent, great sense of humor, and just plain fabulousness, and although Jenia is a newer friend of mine, I think an awful lot of her, too. So you can imagine how upset I was to read these narratives.

This is something that I, in my
strange little American bubble, hadn’t even considered, and it’s just such an outrage to me. I’m sorry, but I seriously think that we need to revisit and reconsider some aspects of policing our borders and monitoring people who come to this country. Granted, China is a communist country, and my country is a bit stupid about communism in the sense that we had that whole stupid “red scare” thing and McCarthy, and on and on. And granted, too, that the questions being asked of Jenia’s friend sound like they are more in the line of protecting Russia than America.

I just don’t get how we can have that group of six men about to go on a shooting rampage at Fort Dix wandering around our countryside buying automatic weapons and copying vids of al Quada in training, when one of my friends can’t come and see her hubby’s family and the other can’t come over here and get her party on. Ugh.

I may calm down and do a reasonable, fact and link filled blog on immigration, tourist visas, and that sort of thing.

A note about the pic: I chose that pic because it illustrates something that tends to go on in any debate be it about abortion (or life and choice) or here about the term “illegal”–semantic nitpicking. Sure the term “illegal alien” is offensive, and I know that Fanta hates it, and you can certainly argue that people can’t be illegal, just perform illegal acts. However, language is a system of signs and signifiers/ieds, and frankly, we all know what is meant by the term “illegal immigrant” and can call them “undocumented workers” or “sunshiny happy people” and it’s all the same at the end of the day. Nitpicking terminology and even the style in which an argument is presented is fun, sure, but ultimately, it’s meaningless and too quickly becomes tiresome.

______ And now for something completely different ______

I’ve got a shrimp blog on the barbie (hehe, annoying nudge of my great friend Ali over in Oz), and this whole cannibalism one (not to mention something on angels that I’ve been musing over), so I want to go ahead and get started on at least one. Please indulge me in the following poll:

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29 thoughts on “Legally Coming to America: Why Aren't Honest, Law Abiding People Welcomed?

  1. Well, I’m not sure I’m “informed” enought to comment…but, I can’t read and not comment! Especially your blogs :o) Anyway, I just don’t get the whole “illegal” thing. I guess I’m a person that is a rule follower…annoyingly so. If the door says “out”..I won’t go “in” it. (my friends laugh at me) Soooo, I don’t understand how people can come here “not following the rules” and then get to stay, get benefits w/out paying in, etc, etc, etc,. Just follow the rules and come in legally!!

    But then, you get to your 2nd part of your blog…getting in legally. I didn’t realize until the last few years how hard it is for some people to get “visas” …for visiting or for living. And I’m stilil surprised about Tally’s situation…I’d think it would be easy from the UK. Wow, what I know! Yes, there is a biggo screw-up going on in our system, apparently.

    Thanks for the informative blog! Ohh, and I voted “gross” :p

  2. Meh, I’ve seen Alive…I’d probably eat human flesh if I was dying…

    OK, that’s the fun stuff out of the way. I’m applauding your blog! I mean, yeah, I’m biased but damn, it annoys me…why on earth do I bother, when I could just become an illegal…and declare myself so, and still have it be ok, because, dude, it’s an amnesty. lol, I gabble when I’m ranty, sorry.
    You know what really irks me? The sheer amount of money that Kris and I have put into this. My medical appointment, for example…£110 ($55) for my train fare…£170 ($340) for my medical and £85 ($170) for Alex’s…then when I go down for my interview, another train fare, about $200 processing fee…plus a $20 fee to get my passprt sent back to me…seriously, wtf?
    They’re a money-making machine, for sure, and they have been quite shambolic in some ways.

    And let’s not even get started on the crap endured when arriving at the airport…fully body search, anyone?

    And I’m getting worked up too…I feel chocolate is in order 😛
    Great blog Fuzzy, and thank you 😀
    Hugggs to you.

  3. Oh you’ve got me started now…sending back my picture because it “wasn’t colour enough”…sending Kris a letter saying he’d need a certain kind of form because the old one they’d sent was obsolete…but not sending a new one *rolls eyes*.
    It’s been a nightmare in some ways but I Ffeel like we’re in the home strait now.

  4. You should do blog entries on all of the above listed subjects! 😀 Cannibalism and angels both interest me, but that is just my humble opinon.

    I know how hard it is for people to try to get here legally. A friend of mine has been wanting to come to the US for a few years, and every time the information he is given about immigration is vague and confusing. Heck, I’ve been trying to help him out, and half the time I don’t know what is going on! I have been angry for a long time about how easy it is for illegals to come and stay here, which is why our immigration system is in the mess that it is. The land of opportunity has become the land of taking advantage of opportunity that is not legally yours. Why have laws at all? I realize a lot of these people are trying to escape horrible living conditions in other countries, but does that mean they have the right to bend the laws in their favor?

  5. No worries, Ang, about not feeling qualified to comment; none of us are in terms of being experts or whatever, but we have brains and opinions, so I say, let’s hear it!! And I think you’re so right, too, about doing things legally. And I’m JUST the same about following directions, rules, laws, etc. I’m a total nerd about it, so I get the giggles and stares, too. Yay! Thanks for the fab comment!

    Tally and your like me-ness, I just LOVE it! Of course, I’ll be blogging Alive (if I ever get around to the cannibalism post), and I would so snarf on some human flesh if in that sitch (and so long as no one was killed for meat, that’s a whole other moral dilemma and a path I wouldn’t take. Dead bodies lying around? A buffett of survival goodness). Okay, so now I don’t have to do that blog, after all. Except the part about Mad Cow disease, but whatever. Shrug. As to your emigration issues, believe me, I feel your pain, and I hate that you have to go through all that, like Ang, I thought it would be (and should be) easier since you are from the UK, but apparently not. Probably that stupid shoe bomber’s fault. Hate him. And you’re very welcome. What are friends for? 😛

    Well said, Princess Ceres, and I, too, feel sad that people have such living conditions that they are so desperate to get away, but I think that the burden on this country is just too great to take on that, too. The people who make a mockery of our systems are not the people who suffer, it’s the good, decent people who want to do things the right way who suffer. And that makes me batty!! And you are so right about the paperwork being insanely difficult to follow or understand much less fill out . . . Ugh. Thanks for your great comment. 😀

  6. LOL @ “Dead bodies lying around? A buffet of survival goodness”…I’ve been giggling a straight minute, and Alex obviously thinks I’ve flipped.
    Yeah, i wouldn’t kill for the meat, but if you’re dying…and your kid was dying…and there’s a well fed, meaty dead person…meh, I could go for a human barbecue.
    Are you going to delete the first person to say “Nummy treat”?

    I know the US takes their security seriously, I get that, I really do…I do, however, resent being made to feel like a criminal every time (without fail) that I’ve entered the country. *Shrugs* we’ll get there soon, hopefully.

  7. well, i don’t know your friends situation, but i will say that if we hadn’t hired an immigration lawyer, i don’t know that hubby would still be here in this country right now. the paperwork is confusing. and costly. there’s a lot of running around and hurry up and wait. i can’t tell you how thankful i am that we started before 9/11 or it might be even worse.

    i’m going to make sure to send hubby over this way. great post, fuzzy!

  8. Tally, lmao @ our cannibal discussion! I think I’d just pretend the first person who says “nummy treat” is joking rather than delete them. I might not fall asleep around them, though! hehe. I think it’s an absolute OUTRAGE that you are treated like a criminal when you come into this country legally; your description of the immigration loser your last trip really made me angry, too! There is no excuse for that, but I do know that those Napolean Complex power trips happen everywhere. I was once wanded at Heathrow by the scariest, meanest, most condescending woman of all time. Humiliating. Anyway, you’ll be here soon, and I will definitely celebrate!! 😀

    Hey, Kerry, and yes, the lawyer route is a good way to go if you can afford it and all. And yes, so glad that you got all that done pre-9/11! Red rover, red rover, send Dudge on over!! lmao Thanks and hugs to you, fab Kerry! 😀

  9. We did look into getting a solicitor on the recommendation of many immigration forums…but that’s just stacking up the cost even more. I just crossed my fingers and hoped we were smart enough to deal with it all ourselves…and we seem to be getting there! this really is the last hurdle, to all intents and purposes. But yeah, I’ve had a few sleepless nights over it.

    And poor you, Fuzzy, how could anyone be mean to you?! Stupid little megalomaniacs!

  10. i think we got lucky with our lawyer. at the time i was working with a woman who’s husband was having immigration problems (because he was originally from iraq) and she’d been to see several lawyers before she found the one she recommended to us. a lot of them live up to the slimy lawyer stereotype, apparently.

  11. I’ll wait for the ‘reasonable fact based’ post I think. The personal experiences that you have posted do not make pretty reading, and immigration seems to be an explosive issue over there. It is a divisive issue here too, with the ubiquitous Polish builders springing up everywhere [not quite as exciting as it sounds], but I don’t think it is quite as politically sensitive as it is in the States.

    Here’s some of the numbers that confuse me about the debate in the States:

    Unemployment [November 2006, Bureau of Labor Stats] – 6.8 million.
    US Population [Wikipedia] – 300 million
    Estimated illegal immigrants in U.S. – 12 to 20 million!!

    Does this mean that [at the lower end] roughly 5% of the population is there illegally? So if there was no amnesty you would be shipping back 1 in 20 people? Furthermore does it mean, even assuming full employment for all the legal folk, that you would be missing maybe 4 or 5 million people to fill jobs? Also, do any of the illegal immigrants pay taxes at the moment?

    Am I over simplifying things here? Probably. I was just surprised at the numbers, as I heard the 12 million figure bandied about in the Republican Presidential candidates debate. 12 million and growing too!

  12. No kidding, Tally! Hmph.

    Isn’t it wonderful how these things can work out, though, Kerry? Being in the right place at the right time and all that. 😀

    Fabi, I guess with you being a future PM and all, you can’t have any record of an emotional or on the fly reaction. That’s okay, I still think you’re Fab. As to your points, yeppers, it’s a big dilemma here, and the figures and projections are worthy of a quite lengthy powerpoint presentation. As with all/most issues and as you’ve noted, people intuit a stance and then find the research to support it; pretty much the same here. To answer one of your questions, illegal immigrants pay sales taxes and other such taxes, but as they don’t have legal jobs, they don’t pay income tax (either state or federal). Anyway, thanks for waiting for that post (cheater! you said that and then got all into it; yay!), but you may have a long wait. 😀

  13. Living in New York City I am surrounded by many illegal immigrants, and I agree that many of them are working in jobs where they work for far less than your average American works. Of course they are being taken advantage of but it is their choice to be here. I also agree that there are many Americans who would do these jobs but would expect a reasonable amount of pay. And I have been to Canada many times, I have never had a problem crossing the border and sometimes they don’t even check my passport! So I agree, security needs to be stepped up at our borders.
    I have heard on the news that an illegal immigrants can get a mortgage to buy a house, how can they buy a house if they are here illegally? Who cares as long as the banks are making money, right!!? And I am not 100% sure but I think some illegals may even be able to collect welfare!
    It is sad that good people, honest people like the one’s mentioned in your blog have such a hard time coming to this country, I am sorry for them.
    Great post!

    I voted gross, by the way….lol

  14. OK, so I have to say I love the fact that most of your comments are about the blog you say you’re GOING to write, and not the one you’ve just written. Somehow, we can all sit around the campfire (pun intended) and laugh about cannibalism. But immigration is a strange and complex issue. I know that I don’t have my mind around it. Frankly, I don’t have a problem with letting anyone in. Economically, we have illegal immigrants tending to do the jobs which Americans don’t want to do anyway. And since America doesn’t really take good care of its citizens in the first place, I don’t really view it as a big disadvantage. (Oh! Did I say that?!?)

    Thanks for yet another thought provoking blog, which you’ve so beautifully illustrated with stories of people you know and love who’ve had visa and immigration problems. When I read things like this, I am definitely not proud to be an American. Think they’d let me out?

  15. yes, it was quite a lucky break for us. my friend highly recommended our lawyer and i am really grateful because all the forms and rigamarole involved in immigrating to this country is really confusing.

  16. Great comment, Maggie; thanks!! Yes, it’s very weird to me how it all works, and I definitely don’t understand it. I’m almost afraid to look into it because what little I do know is so infuriating. Last fall there was this story here in Massachusetts where an illegal immigrant was suing the Commonwealth for not letting him get a drivers’ license. Not kidding. Sometimes I feel like I live in a parallel universe of all things backwards and strange. Keep the good comments acomin’ (omg, did I just say “acomin'” Yikes!). 😀

    lmso, Jillene, I do believe the first blog of mine that you read/commented on was the blog that was not about spontaneous human combustion, no? Don’t give away my secret methods of carrying on simultaneous discussions (or as in the blog that was not about shrimp, just providing a little something for everyone . . . just in case). 😀 As to being let out, from what I hear it’s not a problem to leave, but they may not let you back in. And you can’t just go anywhere in the world, either, so make sure you find out each country’s immigration policies and follow procedures strictly (you can be executed for entering some countries illegally). Someone once asked me what I think they call illegal immigrants in other countries, and the (okay flip) answer I gave was “deported.” Baahaa, I crack me up. SOOOOOOOOOOOOO wonderful to see you back; hope you are doing well. We need to catch up soon, k? Huggs

    Oh, Kerry, I know, it’s completely insane all the papers and stuff, did you read up and see what all Tally’s gone through? Crazy! And she’s got to take her son out of school tomorrow (again) to take him to London for something still further. It just makes no sense. I don’t know what the answer is, but I do think something should be done (well, I guess everyone thinks something should be done, it’s figuring out what, I guess. Sigh. Too big for me tonight; I’m off the bed. 😀

  17. Gah… illegal aliens…

    What really got my goat was last years protests. In the first bunch they all seemed to be chanting in Spanish and waving every flag other than Old Glory. And if that wasn’t enough the next time they’re demonstrating, there’s US citizens making sure that they’re all all chanting in English and waving nothing but Old Glory.

    I took this latter action as an affront to myself and all of my fellow immigrants, (past, present and future), who did/are doing/will do things legally.

    I mostly keep quiet on this subject as I feel that being a Caucasian whose native tongue is English anything I say will be construed by the illegals and their supporters as being “racist”, which seems to be their standard accusation.

    I’m not racist… I’m simply a law abiding Permanent Resident, (or Legal Alien, if you prefer), who wants to see these criminals, (imho, they are breaking a law, therefore they are criminals), prosecuted for their actions. I don’t give a crap if the illegal immigrant is Mexican, British, Nigerian, Japanese, Australian or a goshdang Martian!

    After all… just imagine the outrage if paedophiles started marching for their rights to be paedophiles… or murderers to their right to murder. No one would stand for that, would they?

    Oh dear… now I’m envisaging such protests being backed by the ACLU, and being allowed to happen without consequences for the perpetrators of the crimes…

    *sigh*`

  18. Today a town located about 30 miles from me created a refuge for undocumented workers, better known as illegal aliens here! The city council passed what it calls migrawatch. Migra in Spanish is defined as when speaking of the Border Patrol! The City Council passed this by a vote of 4-3, under migrawatch undocumented workers will be warned when the Federal Government is going to conduct a raid, thus creating a sanctuary for illegal aliens! Back in September the Federal Government conducted such a raid on a lettuce field in this town. Over a 100 illegal alien were detained or arrested. One of the reason the City Council used to justify migrawatch, was that it left countless numbers of children stranded when school was out for the day, I’m sure this caused more problems for the social workers and the cities budget that the council failed to mention! I would like to know how these children where admitted to these public schools anyway! This raid brought an abrupt stop to the harvesting of the produce here! Feeling here is that migrawatch must be squashed before surrounding cities adopt a similar policy! It is well known that California is a haven for illegal alien! With all the produce here and being the Salad Bowl Capitol of the World, I see no end to this problem! There is so much money in produce and with that comes power. A short time back a tunnel was discovered from Tijuana, Mexico to Otay Mesa, California……Otay Mesa is near San Diego! Since 9/11, 20 tunnels have been discovered in Arizona and California! Let me add that there are a lot more coming through those tunnels than drugs! Hello our field laborer! These tunnels were strategically placed where they are as Yuma, Arizona and California are where the Produce Company’s splits it’s growing season! Homeland Security has it’s place, but when I read about the plight of Tally and Fanta, wrong is not the adjective to describe our immigration problems! Tally I hope you are in the arms of the man you love real soon! Fanta, it is so wrong that you and your Husband can’t visit your Family without having to endure all of the garbage they put you through. I hope and pray that you are reunited with your in laws soon! Here we have two people trying to enter the country legally and out here in California this is only a fraction of what is going on! Yes Maggie get pregnant over here and we will take real good care of you! I would like to know the ratio of how many Tally’s and Fanta’s their are to every illegal crossing! Not a fan of the Patriot Act either…Michael

  19. Ok so I am jumping in without reading “your” comments (well not yours but you know what I mean, I read yours..its the others I haven’t…blah blah) because obtaining visas is hard in every country and we all have illegal immigrant problems….I feel for Fanta but one does have to understand that immigration departments are paid to do their job and those people who go about things in very orderly and legal manners are always the ones that come under the most scrutiny. Now I am not American and have never been there so I don’t know the problems other than what I read here on friends blogs but unfortunately the only way to reamin legal is to behave legally. When I applied for an Australian visa when I was engaged to Rob 15 years ago…we went to the Department (capital D note) and were upfront honest, we were going to Oz for a year, we were engaged, we were coming back to England to get married….their response was “you cannot have a year visa because you won’t come back..so we are giving you 3 months”. The rationale behind that? Pleasse enlighten me if you understand it because we didn’t. Anyway, we figured we were going to get married anyway and come back here so why waste all the money on trips and visa applications and within 5 weeks we were Mr & Mrs and changed the application to one for permanet residency which was immediately granted…in saying immediate I mean 3 weeks. this doesn’t make any sense…as the future Mrs Barnett they didn’t want me but as the here and now Mrs B I was acceptable…bizarre stuff….they just knew what an asset I would be to this glorious country LOL. (joke!!)(well, ok I do have tickets on myself but I don’t sell them…honest L4).
    Anyway, where was I? Oh yes! About 3 or 4 years later our best man tried to bring his Spanish fiancee into the country and it took almost 2 years of to-ing and fro-ing and letters to consulates with photos “to prove it” before they would grant her residency. Now we have a pommy mate (that’s an english fella to those of you who don’t know the lingo) who cannot for the life of him get residency even though he has lived here for almost three years on various visas. We also know a plethera of people who are here and working illegally who have just overstayed their visas – no we don’t mix with the criminally minded (or I don’t…hmmm…well maybe I do but not knowingly…perhaps I should investigate!! L3) because no-one is prepared to visa them up. We have detention centres full of runaway refugees who jump ship from their own countries and come here to sit in thes horrible places and wait in line to get visas whilst those who go through the legal processes can’t get a look in. Um…what am I waffling on about? L5 Oh yes….cannibalism….I am the only one who went for nummy treat L5…there’s that troublesome sense of humour again….oh I LOVE coming to your page and waffling on….I think we should have a human BBQ…throw another shrimp on the barbie takes on a whole NEW context at the all female eat-a-thon…and what would the men have for starters…melons? L5 Love you heaps…moi xxxx

  20. Hi Fuzzy 🙂

    I can only relate with the UK here.

    In the late 40’s and early 50’s the UK was booming with immigrants. At that time the UK was booming, Industrial wise; especially in the cotton mills. A guy could walk out of his job at 10 a.m. and find himself in another job 10 minutes later at the next factory; that’s how it was. To a great extent those immigrants filled a need and the vast majority of them worked in the cotton mills. Other than that, immigrants came to work in the care sectors, mainly hospitals as simple cleaners all the way up to the most gifted surgeons. Without doubt there was a need.

    But, and as always, a time comes when fortunes change. Jobs become scarcer and the initial need to fill a gap is no longer needed because no such gaps exist. And today the UK, like many other places in the free West, is now very much a melting-pot of all-and-any nationalities. Sub-Cultures abound and some districts are predominantly those of immigrants. The quota that we couldn’t fill we now find over-subscribed by our own Nationals and those Immigrants of years gone by. Add to that those of Immigration that is ongoing.

    I’m sorry if I appear to be going off-tangent here. What I am getting to is that we either want immigrants or we don’t. And if we do then our Nations should be prepared to accept them. If we are prepared to accept them then there should be a much simpler way in which we allow them to gain access; I mean, if we embrace them to us then shouldn’t it be made a fast transition? If we don’t want them, then we should simply close the door; and yes, I know … I don’t think the answer is to close the door because there are a lot of people that immigrate *within* the free West so I see it to be a two-way street here. Immigration is Immigration.

    I feel deeply sorry for those legitimate people that apply to Immigration only to find themselves hitting door after door of red-tape and rules that clash from department to department. We either embrace those legitimate Immigrants or we close the door. But I know that to close the door is neither right nor is it any sort of answer.

    Just my take of course

    Hugs and much love to you fuzzy

    ~F~

  21. Dudge, I definitely feel your pain about not feeling free or comfortable discussing the topic as a white person because of the accusation (stated or otherwise) of racism, and that’s just bs. I mean look at Al Sharpton this week, he can insinuate the Romney doesn’t believe in God like that? Imagine if Romney said that about a black person? Geez, look at what Sharpton did to Imus. Anyway, that’s another rant, but you are so right, there are steps one must take to emigrate to EVERY country on this planet, why should people not have to go through ANY to emigrate here (illegally) and then be granted amnesty? It’s ten kinds of wrong. You don’t hear people in any other country in the world demanding citizenship, rights, and benefits of a country they are in illegally; just here. It’s a joke. Grrrrrr. This can rile me up like little else can, Dudge, sory to go off!! Thanks for your fab comments. 😀

    Michael, wow! Thanks for all that great data, you rock. I think, too, that your point is a good one and reminds me of all the people who are collecting benefits checks monthly at the P. O. boxes here in the U. S. then going back to their homes in Mexico. Grrr Grrrr Grrrr.

    Ali, your comment made me laugh and laugh, you are too funny! Yes, there should be rules to follow for entering and staying in a foreign country, but ALL people should follow those rules or have actual consequences, you know? Here, the consequence is full pardon with legal residency thrown in. For a fee. It’s absurd. And L5 at the “nummy treat” choice!! Too funny. 😀 Huggs and snogs to you, my wonderful friend!! xx

    Another wonderful and comprehensive comment from you, FrankiE, thank you so much. I think that we can’t just shut the door (though some people here are so frustrated and angry, they feel that way), and I wouldn’t want that. We should welcome people, but as I’ve said, I think that people should follow the established policies and procedures . . . where else in the world can you just sneak in and stay and suck off the social systems of a country? We can’t (obviously) just have people freely moving about the world unless people are indeed freely moving about the ENTIRE world, not just oozing in and out of the US and the UK. It’s so odd to me that everyone hates our countries (the US far more, obviously), but are literally dying to get in. And then once here behave in ways that would get them executed or worse in their own countries. I don’t get it, and I don’t have a fix for it. But I don’t think wide open OR closed borders are the answer. It’s a huge, multi-layered and very very complex issue because it’s so intertwined with so many other equally volatile and complex issues. It’s really beyond my abilities to even grasp fully, let alone solve. THanks again for your fab comments, FrankiE! Huggs and love right back to you, too. 😀

  22. Oh you are too welcome…nice to have a giggle even during such a serious debate as this one!! Bring on some more for me – I love coming here it is so much fun….takes me well away from the realities of my dull existance!!!

  23. Definitely, I like to keep my sense of humor, Ali, even as you say when it comes to serious issues. Especially since there’s not much a blog talk is going to do to solve the problem! 😀 Oh, sorry, nothing too debate-worthy today, just some pics of this and that, but I’m sure there’ll be something that we can chatter about soon enough. Yay!

  24. I don’t think that your county is that bad to be honest. A friend from work has been trying to get intoCanada for years and they have put in there first applictions which took three years to reply to and they had to reply apply for some reason and now they have to wait 4 years for a yes or no and try and get on with their lifes in the mean time. Really not fair!

  25. Hey Fuzz,I have noticed immigration (especially illegal one) has always been the hot topic on your blogs. Personally, I have always been too damn interested in the immigration systems of almost all immigrant countries of the world (especially English speaking ones) I used to read all different forms just to study them. I even wanted to study immigration laws at academic level! But anyhoo.. I will drop little takes on subjects you raise.

    1.) The Whole world is flocking to U.S.A to immigrate, to visit, to work etc.. Needless to say U.S. embassies and immigration department are OVERWORKED and OVERLOADED. Here in New Zealand I have met scores of international University students who said they came to NZ just because American embassy randomly rejected their student visas even after Universities, colleges, schools etc. in U.S. had accepted their applications.They almost randomly select applications and in the process many times, let the crooks in and shut the doors on good ones. ALL immigrant countries do it, but the U.S. more so, because the numbers applying to get into U.S. are HUGE.

    2.) OF COURSE U.S. visa forms are most bureaucratic but trust me, other countries are no less intricate. I remember reading and filling out 25 page long Australian student visa form with other ‘supplementary’ forms and too much proofs, documentations to be attached! So…. no getting away from this.

    3.) Fanta’s case baffles me BECAUSE citizens of Many countries (especially western) can travel to U.S. visa free for a limited time. (often a couple of months, that could be renewed once they are on U.S. soil) I thought Fanta was from Spain? hmmm..but I notice she has Hungarian citizenship. Hungary is not one of the visa free countries, unfortunately. But this may change soon. Read the latest story, ”EU to demand U.S. commitment to visa-free travel for all 27 countries” available at http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/04/25/europe/EU-GEN-EU-US-Summit.php

    4.) I understand Tally’s fix and frustration. Spouse visas require huge amount of CHORES! One should get the services of professional immigration agents as usually they have all the latest forms and information,updates etc. Also, I must mention that there is something called K4 visa (as far as I remember) it is also called Fiance/e visa. This is the quick way of reunification for the lovers. lol. It is easy to get and lets you travel to U.S. to unite with the love of your life. It let’s you decide within 6 months if you’re going to marry or not. If yes, you can apply for Spouse visa/green card from your local U.S. Immigration department branch.

    5.) The Mexican Wave– I understand MOST illegal immigration in U.S. is Mexican or Latino. Because it is simply TOO TOUGH and expensive for other nationalities to reach U.S. shores illegally. Now, Mexican immigration to U.S. is a big thing. I’m sure many of them come here legally,just because they already got oodles of relatives who legally reside in the U.S. But many jump the border because of desperate poverty. They even die like insects and rodents while doing this. Such stories are saddening and depressing, at least for me. (Remember, destitute Europeans/ Irish did it too, DECADES back)

    You’re right on the other hand that businesses benefit from illegals because they hire them cheap and don’t have to pay taxes to IRS. Good solution would be to have an annual quota for work permits (to be renewed every year or so) for Mexicans to come to U.S. legally. This will have them documented and they will pay into the tax system. Most of such workers who prove they held a regular job or jobs for say 5 years or so and are well established, have no criminal records … can then be invited to apply for green card.

    This policy has to be discussed with Mexican govt. who in return will promise to check illegals jumping fences from their side. Hmmmm.. either this or thousands of undocumented illegal aliens and criminals and tons of headache for everyone.

  26. Thanks, Snuggles, it is good to remind me that it’s not just us; it just seems that we are so bad because so many people want to live here and we’ve got this weird and confusing ideology about melting pot openness and very real economic and national security issues in constant conflict. Thanks for stopping in AND posting a comment. Yay yoU!! Huggs

    Hey Elmo, it’s SO GOOD to see you back in form! Bravo. I think that what you’ve said here makes good sense, and I’ve little to add. But (you saw that one coming, huh?) I think for Fanta’s case, she was working in China at the time of the visa app, and that would be a problem here. I don’t agree with it, but I do know it’s harder for people from certain countries (esp. communist ones, etc.) to get in, even for a visit. And yes, the immigration people are overworked and the system is back logged, but the way to fix that is not to shrug and say they’re doing the best they can with what they have (not that YOU said this, but it’s what the gov’t seems to be saying). Interesting info for Tally, thanks! Mexicans have been “waving” in here for about forty years (steadily and in increasing numbers), so it’s not recent; it’s only recently become an issue. A huge issue. A little too little, a little too late. The problem is far beyond border security now (though that’s a component, of course). Thanks again for your thoughtful and thought provoking comments!! 😀

  27. It is helpful to look at Mexican immigration law since US practices are often condemned as “oppressive” or “racist”..

    1. If you migrate to Mexico, you must speak the native language

    2. You have to be a professional or an investor. No unskilled workers allowed.

    3. There will be no special bilingual programs in the schools, no special ballots for elections, all government business will be conducted in Spanish language.

    4. Foreigners will NOT have the right to vote no matter how long they are in Mexico.

    5 Foreigners will NEVER be able to hold political office.

    6. Foreigners will not be a burden to the taxpayers. No welfare, no food stamps, no health care, or other government assistance programs.

    7. Foreigners can invest in this country, but it must be an amount equal to 40,000 times the daily minimum wage.

    8. If foreigners do come and want to buy land that will be okay, BUT options will be restricted. You are not allowed waterfront property. That is reserved for citizens naturally born into this country.

    9. Foreigners may not protest; no demonstrations, no waving a foreign flag, no political organizing, no badmouthing our president or his policies, if you do you will be sent home.

    10. If you do come to Mexico illegally, you will be hunted down and sent straight to jail.

    http://www.city-journal.org/html/16_3_immigration_reform.html

  28. Fuzzy, dear, it couldn’t been said any better! u put so much passion in every line, and also every point u made is so damn true! wish I knew u would link my other comment, I would check the spelling before posting! :-))
    Sorry for being away for a while, I…ghm… was overexcited last few days LOL now back to my cold blooded rationalism! 🙂
    But after all I’d like to add… there’s no perfect country in this world, no perfect government, in fact, nothing can be perfect! so even though yr embassies around the world aren’t the exact example of politeness, it doesn’t make US to be something that doesn’t worth to be proud of, as well as it doesn’t stop the majority of simple americans from being as wonderful, lovely, smart, sharp, wise and charming as u r, dear!

  29. Sarge, this is very interesting; are these really Mexico’s immigration policies? Do you have a link? And the link you did provide certainly provides a different spin than I’m used to seeing on this issue, and I’m glad of that. I’ll have to sit and read the whole thing one of these days (near future). An aside: again, you surprise me, I thought you’d be on the amnesty side of things and condemn the US as racist, etc. & etc. on immigration. 😀

    Jenia, wow! Thanks for the fantastic compliments; how sweet and generous of you. And you are so right, there is no perfect government or perfect immigration system, but I sure got all upset about this didn’t I? teehee Huggs

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