© Attorney Farhad Sethna 2012
This Christmas, if I had a chance to sit on Santa’s lap (the real Santa, that is) and tell him what I wanted, I have a long list. Who doesn’t. But I have been a good boy all year and so I would like to ask Santa for at least a few of my favorite things:
Santa, Buddy, please have:
Congress pass the DREAM Act for me:
You see, the DREAM Act would give permanent immigration status to millions of young people who came to this country without documentation or whose documentation has expired. These young people have no choice and nowhere else to go except to stay in the United States. With their intelligence, drive to succeed and determination, these young men and women would be an asset to America.
Yes, Santa old pal, finalize the“Stateside” waiver for me:
The I-601A waiver has been in the works since early 2012. Surely, it is time to finalize those regulations so that people can start applying for those waivers and families can be reunited with a minimum amount of separation.
If anyone can do it, Santa, you can: have Congress pass comprehensive immigration reform:
I know, I know, this really seems like an incredibly difficult wish to fulfill. After all, if Congress can’t even agree on solving the simple issues, how are they going to agree enough to solve the difficult issues such as comprehensive immigration reform? If anyone can do it, Santa you can!
And please leave for me, beneath my Christmas tree- a true and unconditional hold on deporting anybody who has not committed any serious criminal offenses:
Deportations destroy families. Deportations destroy lives. For someone who is here illegally with no criminal violations or perhaps just minor criminal convictions, deportation seems like an extremely harsh penalty. This is especially true if an individual would have waivers available for the same convictions if he or she were a legal permanent resident. Therefore, deport only those with a serious criminal record. Allow those to stay who have either a clean record or only a few minor violations.
I don’t need a fast car or a Rolex, so Santa, please make the individual states stop meddling with immigration law:
The enactment and implementation of Immigration law is delegated to the federal government under the United States Constitution. States need to stop “dabbling” in immigration law and creating a patchwork quilt of state laws throughout the country. Those states that take the “enforcement only” approach risk losing significant labor, both skilled and unskilled. That, in turn would wreak further economic hardship in that state. States need to realize that immigrants are a part of the American landscape and push Congress to do its job, rather than enact piecemeal legislation.
My final wish; Santa, you’re a dish!
That Latino, Asian and immigrant-rights groups throughout the country unite to force Congress to do what it was elected to do: pass laws that benefit all Americans, not just a select few. Push Congress to enact positive immigration change.
So Santa, buddy, hurry down the chimney tonight.
About the Author: Attorney Farhad Sethna has practiced law for over 20 years. Since 1996, he has been an adjunct professor of Immigration Law at the University of Akron, School of Law, in Akron, Ohio. His practice is limited to immigration and small business. With offices in Akron and Dover, Ohio, Attorney Sethna represents clients in all types of immigration cases. Our number is: (330)-384-8000. Please send your general immigration questions to AttorneySethna@immigration-america.com. We will try to answer as many questions as possible.
This is only general legal information. Please consult a qualified immigration attorney for advice on your specific case.