Immigration Policy Run Amuck

While this has nothing, at all, to do with gay rights, it does concern human rights.  We have our very own immigration drama playing out right here in Fresno, and it is vital that the voices of every concerned citizen be heard by our elected representatives. 

Image this scenario.  It’s 1991 and the Soviet Union is on the verge of collapse.  The resulting turmoil and independence movements in the Soviet Republics becomes very dangerous, especially if you happen to work for the Soviet government.  One young family, a husband, who was a police officer, his wife and infant son are forced to flee the Soviet Republic of Armenia in fear for their lives shortly after protesters burn their home to the ground.  The husband goes to America and applies for asylum, and is joined a couple of years later by his wife and son, who had been forced to seek refuge in Russia.

Fast forward to 2008.  The infant is about to graduate from high school in Fresno, California.  However, he is not just graduating – he has a 4.0 grade point average and is the valedictorian of his high school.  He has been accepted to the University of California, Davis where he plans to major in chemistry with a career goal of either being a dentist or pharmacist. That is, unless the U.S. Government deports him, his parents, and, for all practical purposes, his 12 year old brother <span style="font-weight:bold;">who is a natural born citizen of the United States</span>.  Having exhausted their final appeals, the family has been ordered out of the United States on June 20.

It boggles the mind the level of callousness and sheer stupidity on the part of the government that decides it is in the best interest of our society to evict a family that is working, paying taxes and raising model children.  Can someone explain how our economy is assisted by booting out future medical professionals?  How are we made safer by sending a family back to a hostile society?  How can the government justify forcing an American Citizen out of this nation by evicting his entire family?

In New York Harbor a rather large, green statue stands.  This statue is holding a tablet that reads, "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door."  For those of you unfamiliar with what should be basic knowledge, that big green statue is the Statue of Liberty.  The Golden Door, however, has been slammed shut with a "Go Away" sign firmly attached.

The kid in this drama is named Arthur Mkoyan.  Arthur and his family’s last chance is for a Private Bill to be passed in the Congress granting them the right to stay in the United States.  His family has been in contact with California Senator Diane Feinstein’s office to do just that. Private bills, however, are rare, and don’t usually pass.  As such, it is vital that concerned citizens express their views to Congress in this matter.

If you are in California, please take the time to contact Sen. Feinstein and Sen. Boxer.  Fresno area residents should also contact their Representative, which would be Rep. George Radanovich or Rep. Jim Costa.  Contact information is at the end of the article.  Emails would be great – phone calls would be even better – both would be fantastic.  Make sure these individuals understand that the voters of their district expect them to do the right thing in this matter.  If you live outside of California, it would still be helpful to contact your Congressional delegation, as this private bill will come up for a vote.

Senator Dianne Feinstein
331 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (202) 224-3841
Fax: (202) 228-3954
<a href="http://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=ContactUs.EmailMe">Email Link</a>

Senator Barbara Boxer
112 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
(202) 224-3553
(202) 224-0454 fax
<a href="https://boxer.senate.gov/contact/email/policy.cfm">Email Link</a>

Rep. George Radanovich
2367 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202.225.4540
Fax: 202.225.3402
<a href="http://radanovich.house.gov/Contact/email.htm">Email Link</a>

Rep. Jim Costa
1314 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone:202-225-3341
Fax: 202-225-9308
<a href="http://www.house.gov/formcosta/issue.htm">Email Link</a>

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