I Wish I Were In Paris

From war to peace and politics to gossip, if we have an opinion on something we'll share it here.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

More Immigration Hypocrisy

Yes, I'm going to bitch about this until the end of time!! The United States has displayed yet more hypocrisy when it comes to immigration.

SAN FRANCISCO — Seventeen-month-old Hazelle Roa has curly black hair in a pink lacy bow _ and a bright yellow feeding tube taped to her cheek.

That's the only way she can eat because of a little-known genetic abnormality that has kept her in a hospital much of her life. The condition also left her with a thyroid deficiency and a heart artery that is too narrow.

Victor and Maria Roa hope their daughter's life gets easier after delicate surgery Thursday to expand her constricted artery.

But they aren't sure what will happen to her two weeks later, when the couple is under orders to report to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement with their bags packed for a one-way trip to Mexico.

Hazelle, who was born in the U.S., has parents who are illegal immigrants. Hundreds of thousands of families are split by their immigration status, but the Roas' case comes with a twist: Hazelle's rare medical condition, which her doctors contend will require a lifetime of specialized care.

"It's so difficult as a father to think of what will happen to her if we're detained and she's in the hospital," said Victor Roa, 41, who juggles jobs chopping vegetables in a restaurant and driving a truck on nights and weekends. "If a child is sick, you never want to separate from her. It's impossible."

Anti-illegal-immigration activists say the case argues against the policy written into the Constitution that grants automatic citizenship to everyone born in the United States.

"These people can sneak across the border, they have absolutely no connection with this country, and all of a sudden you have a brand new U.S. citizen on your hands that the rest of us become responsible for," said Ira Mehlman, with the Federation for American Immigration Reform. "Nobody feels good about saying no to a child, but the needs outweigh the available resources and difficult decisions have to be made."

What happens to American children of deportable immigrants _ whether they go with their parents or stay with relatives or the state _ is up to the family, said Lori Haley, spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The Roas don't want to take their daughter away from the team of top-notch physicians at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center who have followed her case from the beginning. They don't have other relatives in the U.S., and they can't imagine leaving her behind.

The Roas crossed the border illegally in 1990, and following poor legal advice, entered a frivolous case for asylum. In November 2004, the Board of Immigration Appeals ruled they were in the United States illegally and gave them the option of leaving on their own, Haley said.

When they failed to go by the deadline, the request became a deportation order. In May 2007 they got a letter telling them to surrender to immigration authorities on June 26.

The couple despaired. Two weeks before the deadline, they found a new attorney, David Lunas, who employed a new strategy _ Hazelle's health. He argued that the removal order should be canceled under a rule that allows undocumented immigrants to stay if their departure would cause extreme hardship to an American citizen.

On the day before the Roas were scheduled to leave, Lunas requested a stay of deportation. It was rejected.

"They didn't find the condition the child is in, to be without her parents, results in real hardship," Lunas said.

After some discussion with immigration authorities, the Roas and their attorney went to the immigration enforcement office on July 3 to request a year's stay. Six hours later, they left with a new deadline _ July 26.

That allows the Roas to be by Hazelle's side through Thursday's exploratory heart procedure, when a thin catheter carrying a tiny balloon will open her artery, and a diminutive camera will tell doctors if she needs further surgery.

Hazelle's doctors have written letters in support of her family. They say the Roas are clearly a loving family and their toddler needs their care.

"She's firmly attached to her parents, and for her to tolerate being in the hospital, having procedures done, she needs to have her parents there," said Stephen Wilson, medical director for the pediatric unit at UCSF. "The world of a 17-month-old is her parents."

Wilson added that Hazelle probably wouldn't get the care she needs outside of a leading facility like UCSF. "This isn't a routine case of pneumonia or asthma, something any old physician has experience with," he said in an interview.

And they don't know enough about her condition to be able to say whether her health will improve or deteriorate over time, but they do know that with their care, she'll suffer less.

"There's a likelihood that other problems will crop up. She'll need to be followed very closely," Wilson said. "It requires a team of physicians to get to know her well enough so adjustments can be made as they're needed."

Lunas is continuing to fight for a longer stay, or for the cancellation of the Roas' deportation order under the hardship rule.

"This is one of the provisions that's there for humanitarian reasons, one of the few compassionate provisions there are," Lunas said. "And theirs is the quintessential cancellation-of-removal case."

ICE officials say the agency reviews individual appeals case by case.

In the meantime, Hazelle's parents are left to cope with the uncertainty and financial burden of their complicated situation.

To cover their legal bills, they've sold many of their belongings, including furniture and shoes, in yard sales and to friends. Hazelle's medical expenses are mostly covered by state program that helps low-income children with chronic conditions.

"We want immigration judges to understand we're responsible parents, to look at our case and let us stay and take care of our daughter," said Maria Roa, 37. "No state agency is going to do the job raising her that we can do."

Just a month or so ago people were crying their eyes out over the "poor" wife of a missing soldier in Iraq. They were saying that she deserved to stay in the United States, and she has now magically been made a legal resident despite the fact that for six years she's been here illegally. They said how dare anyone deport her. They said how dare people be heartless and cruel. They said how dare we treat someone with disrespect.

Now, the United States is seeking to deport a husband and wife who have a very sick child who happens to be an American citizen. Why are they being deported? They're being deported because they're here illegally. This child is only seventeen months old. She needs her parents. They've appealed for a hardship exemption. Yet the United States has decided that the child WOULDN'T experience any hardship if her parents were deported. They have decided that the child WOULDN'T experience any hardship if she were left here without them. They have decided that the child/parent bond isn't important. In fact, they don't give a damn about this child. They said that they can take the child with them and leave, thus the government doesn't give a shit what happens to this child. They don't give a shit whether or not an AMERICAN CITIZEN gets proper medical care. What happened to the so-called respect for all human life?

Ah fuck it!! The United States doesn't give a fuck about people so long as they're Americans. And by Americans, I mean WHITE AMERICANS!! If you're an American citizen with Mexican parents, the United States says FUCK YOU!! If you're a very sick child who happens to be an American citizen but has Mexican parents, the United States says FUCK YOU!!

I predict that there will be no exceptions made for this family and this child. They will not be given a free pass like the military wife was given!! They will be deported. The little girl will either be left here without her parents, thus becoming a ward of the state. Or they will ship her ass back to Mexico with her parents, receive half-assed medical care, and probably end up dead. Then what?

Never mind!! Like I said, the United States doesn't give a shit about its own citizens. Have you heard anything about Pedro Guzman lately? Nope? Didn't think so!! He's the mentally-challenged American citizen who was ILLEGALLY DEPORTED TO MEXICO!! Nobody can find him, and the United States government won't bother to look for him.


The family was given a one-year reprieve. BIG FUCKING DEAL!! One whole year!! Wow, we're so generous!! How about permanent residency? This child is going to need specialized care, maybe for the rest of her life. Yet, they only get one year.

You know what, they should just take their daughter and seek medical care in another country. To hell with the United States. This country is full of hypocrisy and those running it are nothing more than thugs!! Tell the United States to go fuck themselves, and leave!! Go to Cuba. Go to France. Go to some other country that is not going to kick your ass out because they have no fucking soul. Your daughter would be better off!!

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