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Child Of Illegal Immigrants Allowed To Become A Lawyer, May Not Be Allowed To Work

Border of US And Mexico

In what appears to be yet another example of how our immigration laws have placed the children of illegal immigrant, a California court has ruled that a man who has been in the country illegally since his parents brought him here as a child may become a member of the California Bar, but it’s unclear if he’ll ever actually be able to work as an attorney:

LOS ANGELES — As a teenager in Northern California, Sergio Garcia worked in the almond fields and in a grocery store, earning his way through college and then law school. He passed the California bar exam on his first try, something just half of all candidates do.

But when it came time to apply for his law license, Mr. Garcia encountered a formidable hurdle: Because he had come from Mexico illegally, he could not become a lawyer.

That changed Thursday when the California Supreme Court ruled unanimously that a law passed last fall by the Legislature allowed Mr. Garcia, 36, to be admitted to the state bar and practice law. What it did not do is address the fact that under federal law, no law firm, business or public agency can legally hire him.

The strange turn of events demonstrates the complicated patchwork of immigration laws that is emerging as Congress remains stalled on an overhaul of the immigration laws and states and courts are stepping in and deciding what rights should be granted to the estimated more than 11 million immigrants living illegally in the country.

Courts in Florida and New York are grappling with similar cases involving immigrants seeking to become lawyers, and Robert M. Morgenthau, the former district attorney of Manhattan, has urged New York’s governor and Legislature to pass a law like California’s.

And while California has gone farther than many others, several states have begun to expand opportunities for immigrants living here illegally, after a wave of laws passed several years ago in Alabama, Arizona and Georgia and other states to crack down on illegal immigration. Unauthorized immigrants can receive in-state college tuition in several states, and 11 states and the District of Columbia now allow such immigrants to obtain some kind of driver’s license, according to the National Immigration Law Center.

Mr. Garcia, in a telephone interview, said he felt that despite the ambiguities, he would be free to open his own practice. “I can finally fulfill my dream and also leave behind a legacy so that an undocumented student 20 or 30 years from now will take it for granted that they can be an attorney,” he said. “There’s a lot to celebrate. I can open my own law firm, and that’s exactly what I intend to do. There’s no law in this country restricting entrepreneurs.”

In its ruling, the court said that California had paved the way for Mr. Garcia’s admission to the bar in October when the Legislature overwhelmingly passed a bill saying qualified applicants could be admitted to the state bar regardless of their immigration status. The court went on to suggest that immigration status should not be considered any differently from, say, race or religion.

“We conclude that the fact that an undocumented immigrant’s presence in this country violates federal statutes is not itself a sufficient or persuasive basis for denying undocumented immigrants, as a class, admission to the state bar,” Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye wrote in her opinion. “The fact that an undocumented immigrant is present in the United States without lawful authorization does not itself involve moral turpitude or demonstrate moral unfitness so as to justify exclusion from the state bar.”

But in its lengthy ruling, the court appeared to leave aside the issue of employment, saying only that “we assume that a licensed undocumented immigrant will make all necessary inquiries and take appropriate steps to comply with applicable legal restrictions and will advise potential clients of any possible adverse or limiting effect the attorney’s immigration status may pose.”

Although the federal government argued in a brief that Mr. Garcia could not work as an independent contractor, several immigration lawyers said that he would legally be allowed to open his own practice and charge clients willing to pay.

 The Los Angeles Times has more:

University of San Francisco law professor Bill Hing estimated that at least two dozen immigrants without green cards graduate from California law schools each year. He said many immigrants were sworn in to practice before the State Bar began asking about immigration status in 2008.
“California now is the only state that has said specifically that undocumented immigrants can practice law,” Hing said. “The hero in this whole saga is the state Legislature and Jerry Brown for acting so swiftly.”

Garcia, a resident of Chico, Calif., came to the U.S. with his family when he was 17 months old. He returned to Mexico when he was 9 and reentered the U.S. without authorization when he was 17. His father, an agricultural worker who obtained U.S. citizenship, applied for a green card for his son in 1994. The federal government accepted the petition in 1995, but Garcia is still waiting for the card.

Under federal rules, the number of visas issued each year is limited and based on an immigrant’s native country. Garcia has had to wait in line behind a large backlog from Mexico. The court said it may take Garcia at least two years and “perhaps many more” to be scheduled for a visa interview.
Garcia graduated from a California high school, attended Butte College, Cal State Chico and Cal Northern School of Law. He received his law degree in May 2009 and passed the California bar examination that same year. He has been working as a motivational speaker.

In its ruling, the court said there was no disputing that Garcia could practice law free of charge and outside the U.S. But, the justices noted, there was disagreement about whether someone like Garcia legally could work as an independent contractor and charge fees.

The U.S. Justice Department has said that would not be allowed. The State Bar has said it was permissible. The court did not rule on the question Thursday.
“We assume that a licensed undocumented immigrant will make all necessary inquiries and take appropriate steps to comply with applicable legal restrictions and will advise potential clients of any possible adverse or limiting effect the attorney’s immigration status may pose,” the court said.

The bar’s investigation “establishes that Garcia is a well-respected, hard-working, tax-paying individual who has assisted many others and whose application is supported by many members of the community, by past teachers, and by those for whom he has worked, but the record also reveals that Garcia’s conduct has not been entirely flawless,” the court said.

When he was 17, Garcia provided a false “alien registration number” to a grocery store where he worked and inaccurately claimed he was a lawful permanent resident, the court said. Garcia did not initially disclose that falsehood to state bar investigators examining his moral fitness to practice law, according to Thursday’s ruling.

The bar decided to overlook the transgression because Garcia had relied on poor legal advice in not immediately disclosing the incident, the court said. Garcia also acknowledged “the wrongfulness of his conduct” and blamed it on his youth, imperfect understanding of English and a moment of panic when the store asked him to complete the form, the court said.

He also once was cited for driving without a license or insurance, the court said. He paid a fine and stopped driving until he obtained a license from Oregon, which at the time did not require proof of lawful residency, the court said. Bar examiners decided that Garcia believed in good faith that he had met the requirements for an Oregon license, although it was not clear whether he had lived in the state for the required six months, the court said.

The first thing worth noting is that while it is unusual for someone with any kind of serious criminal record, or depending on the state almost any kind of criminal record, to be admitted to practice law, it is also not unprecedented. In nearly all such cases, though, the procedure that is followed is usually an investigation by the relevant State Bar’s “character committee,” or whatever it may be called to determine if that person should be admitted to the bar notwithstanding their past record. Beyond that committee, the applicant has multiple levels of appeal all the way up to the Supreme Court of the relevant state. This is what happened in the Garcia case, which has been pending for several years now apparently as the Bar and the Courts deal with what remains a relatively new question for State Bars and Courts to consider, but one that is likely to continue popping up until there is some kind of resolution to the status of people living here illegally. In Garcia’s case, obviously, the question is whether his status as an illegal immigrant, albeit one who holds that status because of choices made by someone other than himself, should by itself be sufficient reason for him to be forbidden to be admitted to the Bar. There are the other two incidents noted above, of course, but they both flow directly out of his, arguably involuntary illegal status so one could presumably argue that they are all part of the same illegal conduct. The California Supreme Court, though, determined that merely being an illegal immigrant was not, by itself, sufficient to establish the kind of moral turpitude that would require that their application for admission be denied:

We conclude the fact that an undocumented immigrant is present in the United States without lawful authorization does not itself involve moral turpitude or demonstrate moral unfitness so as to justify exclusion from the State Bar, or prevent the individual from taking an oath promising faithfully to discharge the duty to support the Constitution and laws of the United States and California. Although an undocumented immigrant‟s presence in this country is unlawful and can result in a variety of civil sanctions under federal immigration law (such as removal from the country or denial of a desired adjustment in immigration status) (8 U.S.C. §§ 1227(a)(1)(B), 1255(i)), an undocumented immigrant‟s unauthorized presence does not constitute a criminal offense under federal law and thus is not subject to criminal sanctions. Moreover, federal law grants federal immigration officials broad discretion in determining under what circumstances to seek to impose civil sanctions upon an undocumented immigrant and in determining what sanctions to pursue. (See, e.g., Arizona v. United States, supra, 567 U.S. ___, ___ [183 L.Ed.2d 351, 366-367].) Under current federal immigration policy it is extremely unlikely that immigration officials would pursue sanctions against an undocumented immigrant who has been living in this country for a substantial period of time, who has been educated here, and whose only unlawful conduct is unlawful presence in this country.16 Under these circumstances, we conclude that the fact that an undocumented immigrant‟s presence in this country violates federal statutes is not itself a sufficient or persuasive basis for denying undocumented immigrants, as a class, admission to the State Bar.17

(…)

The record of the Committee‟s moral character investigation discloses that no individual raised any concern with respect to Garcia‟s moral fitness. Numerous individuals who worked with, taught, and participated in community activities with Garcia over many years had nothing but the highest praise for the applicant. For example, an attorney for whom Garcia worked as an unpaid intern during law school stated that “I know with absolute certainty that Mr. Garcia [is] among the most honest, forthright, and moral individuals that I have ever met.” A law school professor described him as “an exemplary student” who “was always prepared and always conducted himself with the utmost integrity. . . . I know I speak for the faculty and administration when I say it has been our honor to play a small part in his education.” And an administrative law judge, who became acquainted with Garcia in connection with Garcia‟s volunteer activities in Chico, stated that Garcia “has selflessly and effectively worked in a broad range of projects which address the needs of those included within diverse ethnic, social, cultural, and language groups,” and further declared that he “is both honest and reliable,” “circumspect in his judgment and conduct,” and “a credit to his family and community. If allowed, he will be a credit to the State Bar. He carries my highest recommendation.” Although, as noted earlier, the Committee‟s investigation of Garcia disclosed one or two problematical incidents in his past (see, ante, pp. 5-6, fn. 5), the Committee investigated the applicant‟s entire background very thoroughly and concluded that, taking into account his entire life history and conduct, Garcia met his burden of demonstrating that he possesses the requisite good moral character to qualify for a law license. From our review of the record, we agree with that determination.

Having read through the opinion, set forth below, I think the California Court has mostly gotten the decision right here. Garcia became an illegal immigrant because of actions not his choice that were made when he was a minor. He’s lived in California all his life, done well in public school, college, and law school, and he passed the California State Bar Exam. Yes, he made a couple dumb mistakes when he was younger but these themselves were purely due to an immigration status that was thrust upon him by his parents and not by his own choices. Given all of that, it would seem unfair to punish him for the choices that his parents made. As both of the article I quoted above go on to note, gaining a license to practice law is really only half of Garcia’s battle. Under current Federal Law it is by no means clear that it would be legal for him to work as an attorney in any capacity whether it’s for the government, a corporation on other business, as part of a law firm, or even under his own name. Federal Law makes it illegal for anyone to hire an illegal immigrant, so it would appear that being employed by a third party as an attorney is completely out of the picture for him. As for hanging out his own shingle and soliciting clients, the bar on hiring an illegal immigrant would also seem to extend to an individual or business hiring Garcia as a private attorney working for himself. The best he could do with his law license legally, it seems, is work pro bono and that doesn’t exactly pay the bills. If nothing else, it strikes me that cases like this are an excellent example for why we need immigration reform that deals not just with issues like border security and other matters, but also with the millions of people who are here illegally. Because of his age, Garcia is not eligible to take advantage of the special exemptions that President Obama put in place last year for a certain class of children of illegal immigrants, which means he’s in the same pot as the approximately 11 million other people who are here illegally, trying to contribute to the country and make a life here, but left in limbo because of their illegal status. If the Senate Immigration Bill or something like it were passed, Garcia and people like him would be able to obtain sufficient legal status to at least be able to work and contribute to the economy. Instead, he’s stuck in some kind of bizarre legal limbo that makes absolutely no sense. Not everyone agrees with the California Supreme Court, or me, though. Consider this from Jazz Shaw:

Look… I get that there are plenty of people with opposing views on so called “comprehensive immigration reform” and the idea of loosening up the borders. I also understand that there are people who rightly claim that we can’t simply find, round up, detain and deport more than 20 million people in a rapid, reasonable manner with the resources we have available. But give me a break here, media… surely we can catch THIS GUY. Are there no police officers left on the job? Are the ICE offices completely empty? (Some of you will probably blame sequestration.) But cut us a break. Garcia is showing up at major, televised court appearances and doing interviews on CNN. I think we know where he is. And he’s here illegally by his own admission. Who has the responsibility to show up and inform him that he needs to go for a quick ride and get out of the country?

I certainly understand this side of the immigration debate, but I have to wonder whether it’s the right way to approach the issue. As in any other area of law enforcement, the people charged with enforcing immigration laws have limited resources with which to do their duties. Taking that into account, do we want them going after the Sergio Garcia’s of the world, who other than being here illegally through no choice of their own have committed no real crimes, or do we want them going after the people who are both living the the shadowy world of illegal immigrants and involved in violent criminal activity? It strikes me that the second category is what we ought to being going after the second category and the repeat offenders, rather than people like Garcia who, given the opportunities could be productive contributors to society.

Here’s the opinion:

In Re Sergio Garcia by Doug Mataconis

Related Posts:

About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. stonetools says:

    I agree with your post, though, but unfortunately, I know that most House Republicans don’t think this is an excellent argument at all. They fully agree with Jazz Shaw that we should turf Mr. Garcia back into México STAT, where he can practice law there all he wants. And I expect them to vote accordingly if there is ever a vote on immigration reform.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  2. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @stonetools: In all fairness to Jazz and the bros, in this case we have a guy who has jumped the hoops been given consideration for a green card and has been “standing in line waiting his turn” for 18 years. It’s time for the bros to STFU and do their job so that this guys case can be resolved.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  3. Ben says:

    To me, the most ridiculous thing about this article is this:

    His father, an agricultural worker who obtained U.S. citizenship, applied for a green card for his son in 1994. The federal government accepted the petition in 1995, but Garcia is still waiting for the card.

    Really? 20 years later and still nothing, even after having a parent sponsor him? WTF?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  4. bill says:

    he’s been here forever, doubt if he’ll be a leach on society- aside from being an attorney! so good for him, a good friend of mine has too (never took care of the paperwork and had to go to the back of the line) still beats living in mexico i guess.

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  5. @Ben: Our system is seriously f’d up. There really is no other way to put it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  6. Dave Francis says:

    YOU CANNOT TRUST EITHER POLITICAL PARTY?

    A new year’s resolution for all of Congress is to demand the Obama Administration follow the “Rule of Law” and the dictates of the U.S. Constitution. It’s unprecedented the laws that have been encroached by the Leftist Progressive. End excessive rules and regulations by the Environmental Protection Agency. This is the first time that our country has been divided since the inception of the Civil War. Shrink government, cut the American deficit, stop illegal aliens being rewarded with citizenship; their offspring gaining immediate citizenship to supplement parent’s income. It should be a Felony to unlawfully enter this nation without permission. Currently on the Socialist menu for illegal immigrants is granting the privilege of a driver’s license, and now a right to practice law?

    Still millions of Americans are jobless, yet special interests want to import another 30 million into the country; already 1 million plus arrive annually. If the Justice Department followed the law, and we tracked illegal aliens and deported them, those jobs would be quickly filled by neglected low income Americans; thousands would no longer need unemployment benefits, except the parasites that live off their taxpayer host. Let us introduce a biometric Social Security Card ID to halt foreigners from stealing jobs, collapse non-citizens from voting in our election and criminals and foreign nationals gaining access to our credit profiles. Introduce a referendum for a FLAT TAX. In conclusion the theft of tax payer dollars by the IRS to support “deadbeats” and the corruption that is rampant in the halls of Congress and state legislators must end. ALL laws governed by the Constitution will be fulfilled by the TEA PARTY.

    ALERT: Boehner pushing to revamp immigration system, hires Gang of Eight advisory. Fax Congress – Tell them to secure the borders first! http://petitions.conservativeactionalerts.com

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 10

  7. Oh boy. Nothing is more persuasive than a cut and pasted rant.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  8. jmc says:

    Those of us schmucks (many millions of us) who actually have obeyed US immigration law and gone through the terribly nasty and expensive immigration process can usually smell a rat in these sort of stories from 100 yards. And this story stinks. There are so many holes.

    One. Why did the family “return” to Mexico in 1986? The year of the Amnesty. If they had been “legit” illegals in place since 1978 then there was absolutely no reason for them to return to Mexico. In fact it made the process of legitimation under the amnesty for all family members much more difficult if not impossible. Almost two thirds of the three million who claimed amnesty under the 1986 law were mostly likely not legitimate. Either had not worked in agriculture or not been in place since 1980. And most definitely most could not speak even basic English.

    So sounds like this guys father was one of the very many fake amnesty applicants.

    Two. If it was a legit amnesty case why wait till 1994 to apply for a green card when the son was above the age of 16? Once 16 the dependent is now treated as an adult and as so goes to the end of the line. That’s always been the law. Its not like everybody did not know it at the time.

    Three. Decades wait for the lowest priority family related non-special skill immigration category from Mexico sounds about right. The fact that the guy did not reapply for a special skills visa tells me that there are some key facts that have not been make public that disqualify him from applying for any legal immigration status in the US. The fake documentation story sounds fishy. A competent immigration lawyer would have been able to deal with that. So obviously there was a whole lot more illegal activity going on.

    So the whole story as presented is junk.

    Finally. California has way too many lawyers already. There is no need for yet another one. So why does this guy not go home to Mexico. He sounds like exactly the sort of politically mendacious guy who would have a very lucrative career in the PRI.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  9. Tony W says:

    Although I support this lawyer individually, I will offer a devil’s advocate/slippery slope argument.

    I agree we would do a great injustice holding this young man accountable for the actions of his parents, however does that then provide amnesty for future parents to behave the same way going forward – knowing that precedent is now set?

    Without comprehensive reform and long-term clarity (not temporary amnesties) we open ourselves up to problems like this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  10. the Q says:

    George Carlin had a great bit where he showed how language obfuscates and mystifies using the progression of “shell shock” – 2 syllables from WW1 to “post traumatic stress disorder” – 8 syllables to describe the same symptoms of combat.

    Using this as a guide, “wet back” – 2 syllables from the 50s to “undocumented immigrant” – 8 syllables. A gigantic twisting of words to make benign what are essentially lawbreaking criminals. How we decide to punish/overlook such crimes is one thing. To deny through language this essential fact is troubling.

    This guy is using and gaming the system for his own selfish reasons. He lied to the bar investigator about his past and gets a pass since he’s Mexican and a cause celibre.

    He is to the liberals what that idiot murderer Zimmerman is to the wingnuts.

    Why not give this guy the right to vote for christ sakes?

    “You are a raving bigot” in 5….4…3…2..

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  11. @the Q:

    “wet back”

    “You are a raving bigot” in 5….4…3…2..

    Hmmm.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  12. Grewgills says:

    @the Q:
    Please explain how ‘wet back’ is a more accurate and less obfuscating term than undocumented immigrant.
    While you’re at it you can explain what type of criminal isn’t the law breaking kind.
    Throwing out racial epithets then feigning outrage at the thought of someone calling you out is rather pathetic by the way.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  13. @Grewgills: Indeed all the way around.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  14. the Q says:

    Greg wills, if you don’t think that wet back is less obfuscating than undocumented immigrant, then I have some bitcoins to sell you.

    And as for taking the words “wet back” literally and not in the context of “shell shock” shows none of you get my point.

    Carlin realized how the use of language can be destructive and manipulative. If you folks can’t see the progression from wet back (without the liberal knee jerk “racism” paranoia) to undocumented immigrant, then how can you see the total irony of a practicing Lawyer whose oath is to uphold and follow the law, while being guilty of breaking it.

    Oh, I guess we should look the other way since borders are for kooks and Nazi’s and anybody should just be able to come here and do whatever the phuck they want.

    This parsing of the language is the same shcitt the wingnuts engage in when calling it not the Civil war, but the “states rights” war or when they use the Barack HUSSEIN Obama reference or when they blame FDR on Pearl Harbor for embargoing oil and “forcing” the Japanese to attack us.

    I guess the narrow minded aren’t just limited to the superdestroyer or Jenos’ of this world.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  15. @the Q:

    if you don’t think that wet back is less obfuscating than undocumented immigrant, then I have some bitcoins to sell you.

    [...]

    If you folks can’t see the progression from wet back (without the liberal knee jerk “racism” paranoia) to undocumented immigrant,

    Even if we ignore the offensive and derogatory nature of the term “wet back” and assume that it simply means someone who made an unauthorized crossing of the Rio Grande, it is not a better term than “undocumented immigrant” since ALL persons in the country without visas are, in fact, undocumented immigrants (by definition), but they have not all gotten their backs (or anything else) wet getting here.

    You are going to some extreme lengths in your logic, shall we say.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  16. the Q says:

    Mr. Taylor, I am sorry but in the Eisenhower administration, which I was old enough to vote against btw, this was the official term of the US gov’t INS initiative which in 1954 started “Operation Wetback”, so please spare me the whole racism bullschitt. The problem was that “undocumented” migrant farm workers were destroying the wages of the “braceros” who legally entered the country to work.Also, since you werent’ born yet, the Mexican government was strongly urging the US to arrest Mexicans crossing the border, so I guess the Mexican government was racist too. So, I guess accoding to you and choir boy Greg Wills, all of us in the 50s were intolerant bigoted racists.

    The problem with today’s liberals is this total capitulation to corporate capitalism and the unchecked power of the state, so in order to ‘feel” good we salivate over gay marriage and doing absolutely absurd things like giving this guy a special pass to practice law, while him doing so violates the very same law he is sworn to uphold.

    What is so phucking hard for you to understand about this absurdity. He will violate federal law if he does what he is licensed to do.

    I wish you pansy neo liberal worthless baby boomer Democrats would expend just 1/1000th of this energy on crushing Wall street abuse or raising the wages of the lower and middle class which has been destroyed by the tens of millions of low wage workers from across the border (in addition to the “trade treaties” driving jobs abroad, GOP abuse, etc.)

    Again, racism on my part right? or just plain stupidity on yours?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  17. @the Q: You really aren’t paying attention to the words I am using (or the words you are using), which is interesting in this conversation since you are the one arguing (allegedly) for clarity of language.

    I would also note that I have not once used the term “racist” nor “racism”–thou doth protest too much, methinks.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  18. the Q says:

    Mr. Taylor, perhaps I am looking at the bigger picture here that if a liberal (such as myself) is disgusted with the obvious logic avoided in this case, there is a strong underlying presumption that this is somehow “racist”. Thats all. Good day to you sir.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  19. @the Q:

    Mostly you seem to be arguing with straw.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  20. Grewgills says:

    @the Q:

    Greg wills, if you don’t think that wet back is less obfuscating than undocumented immigrant, then I have some bitcoins to sell you.

    If it is so damn obvious you should be able to explain it easily enough. By all means show me how it is more obfuscating to call an immigrant who entered the US without proper documentation and undocumented immigrant, than it is to call that same person a wet back.
    That the US government in the 50s used a term hardly means it is not a term primarily associated with racist pricks. I’m not saying you are a racist prick; I’m just properly identifying the slur.
    Further, given the depth of the Rio Grande now and the preferred modes of entry to the US, the only wet on the backs of most Mexican immigrants is sweat. The only immigrants that end up swimming part of their way here are generally coming from Cuba. So, tell me again how wet back is a more accurate term for people entering this country without the proper legal paperwork.

    PS If you are going to call yourself theQ, then you can look at my avatar and get my pseudonym right.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  21. Latino_in_Boston says:

    This guy’s story is not unusual. The line to get a green card is extremely long and can take over 20 years depending on the person’s circumstances, but especially if you one is from Mexico, one is applying for family reunification and one is over the age of 18.

    The stupidest part about our system is that the United States is educating these people and then making their life hell so that instead of getting the benefit of an educated citizen, we get nothing. Of course, the Republicans cannot engage with the reality of immigration, they can only appeal to fear and ignorance. It’s a powerful combination.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  22. Tony W says:

    @the Q:

    in the Eisenhower administration, which I was old enough to vote against btw

    Fortunately, I suppose, Mr. Q appears to be of an older generation, extremely racist by modern standards, and will sooner, rather than later, join his white-hooded colleagues as they go on to the next world.

    Some people are not persuaded by rational thought. Some people just have to die off.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  23. From a brief summary of “Operation Wetback”

    In some cases, illegal immigrants were deported along with their American-born children, who were by law U.S. citizens. The agents used a wide brush in their criteria for interrogating potential aliens. They adopted the practice of stopping “Mexican-looking” citizens on the street and asking for identification. This practice incited and angered many U.S. citizens who were of Mexican American descent. Opponents in both the United States and Mexico complained of “police-state” methods, and Operation Wetback was abandoned.

    The Q knows of what he speaks. Good times.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  24. Grewgills says:

    @Tony W:
    I’ve seen him comment here before and I would have to disagree with you on that point. He simply thought he was doing something clever with a Carlin bit. Unfortunately, like Carlin in his later years, the bit fell flat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  25. Grewgills says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:
    Not so different than what a certain brand of people want today. My how far we’ve come.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  26. @Grewgills: Depressing, yes?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  27. Grewgills says:

    @the Q:

    So, I guess accoding to you and choir boy Greg Wills, all of us in the 50s were intolerant bigoted racists.

    I missed this bit. You are old enough to realize that Jim Crow was pretty prominent in the 50s. Not everyone in the 50s were bigoted intolerant racists, but a substantial percentage were. Certainly by modern standards the view of most Americans in the 50s towards African Americans, Asian Americans, Latin Americans, homosexuals, and women were some combination of bigoted, intolerant, and racist.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  28. the Q says:

    Wow, a guy who went into the south to register black voters in the 60s is a racist, while your piece of schitt generation is giving away the foundation built by the generations before you by electing do nothing corporate Dems like Bill “lets get rid of Glass Steagall so my fellow boomer Robert Rubin can make $500 million” Clinton and Barack “never stand up for anything against the wingnuts” Obama.

    Under you idiots, poverty has exploded, the wealth gap has ballooned, jobs have been offshored, billionaires taxed iess than a hamburger flipper, our schools are a mess, evolution is doubted….and I’m the racist guy from the 50s whose generation dared to tax millionaires at 91%, raised the minimum wage 15 times in 25 post war years, and you morons are wishing us an early death? Go phuck yourselves while you sip your caffe mocha choco lattes.

    So typical of the narcissist, selfish worhless boomers who now see fit to have an illegal alien lawbreaker who lied twice to the state bar practice law,

    Now, get back to me after you dolts actually DO something other than legalize pot and add new bike lanes. I’ll give this generation just one kudo and that is definitely in racial equality and gender equality, after that, your generation will be seen as the worst in two hundred years.

    Dispute that clowns.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  29. Grewgills says:

    @the Q:
    To be fair, it is mainly your generation forcing politics to the right on social issues so that we can only elect Dems that tack fiscally to the right and are largely afraid to push for more on social justice issues.
    Every generation has good and bad and every generation sees the one that follows it as the one that is sending us to hell in a hand basket. We are all better off putting things in perspective and dealing with it on a rational level rather than ranting and insulting each other. One person insulted you, the rest of us pointed out flaws in your argument (and defended you against that charge of racism btw). Your response was a rant insulting everyone younger than you. I see no real point in a generational pissing contest, but I’ll stack up the sins of my generation against the sins of yours any day of the week.

    Props on your work on civil right btw. You were on the right side of that one, where most of your generation were not.

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  30. the Q says:

    Grewgills, points well taken, yes perhaps I should take my meds lol.

    However, the boomers have failed miserabley and have in fact rolled back many of the New Deal progressive measures which have served us so well.

    So please spare me any comparison between the boomers and the boys and gals born in the teens, 20s and early 30s.

    You’ve done nothing compared to those generations that did the heavy lifting like strikes for example…I will bet a month’s pension that no one reading this has ever gone on strike.

    We created the EPA, the Clean Air and Water Act, Earth Day, OSHA, while you guys can’t even ban GMOs from the food supply.

    Name me one single legislative achievement in the last 30 years that anyone will be taking about 20 years from now? Obamacare a sop to the health industry and a disaster in the making. No single payer system even debated.

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  31. Grewgills says:

    @the Q:

    However, the boomers have failed miserabley and have in fact rolled back many of the New Deal progressive measures which have served us so well.

    Your generation and the boomers have both been voting for that dismantling.

    You’ve done nothing compared to those generations that did the heavy lifting like strikes for example…I will bet a month’s pension that no one reading this has ever gone on strike.

    I was on strike briefly once when I worked in a hotel. There were malasadas and not strike breakers, so it certainly wasn’t like the strikes of early last century. There were some good fights fought and won then back then on fair working conditions, child labor, etc and there was some heavy lifting to be proud of. However, anyone who was not a Protestant Caucasian male was a second class citizen. Jim Crow ruled; it wasn’t until the 70s that many jurisdictions even recognized the possibility of spousal rape,homosexuals receiving a public beating was frowned on less than homosexuals marrying, etc etc.Every generation has things to be proud of and things to be ashamed of.

    We created the EPA, the Clean Air and Water Act, Earth Day, OSHA, while you guys can’t even ban GMOs from the food supply.

    The EPA was in the 1970, so you need to give that one to the boomers. Ditto the Clean Air and Water Act and OSHA, so those go to the boomers too. Earth Day is really just symbolic, but was begun by the UN in 1969, so again it goes to the boomers. As for banning GMOs, that is not a good idea unless you want far more starvation in the world than there is at current. The majority of things that people have eaten in the last 1000 years were heavily modified by humans. The only real notable exceptions are sea food. We have new methods now that have increased the efficiency of our changes and those do come with the need for caution, but abandoning them now is a fools errand.

    As to the earlier worst generation in two hundred years, I’m placing the generations that allowed chattel slavery and committed serial genocide against tribe after tribe of indigenous people on it’s march West below all those that followed in my moral calculus. On the bright side, that includes yours.

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  32. the Q says:

    ……”The EPA was in the 1970, so you need to give that one to the boomers. Ditto the Clean Air and Water Act and OSHA, so those go to the boomers too”…….

    Greg, you are a deluded narcissistic boomer….really, in 1970 how many 24 year old congressman where there? Oh, yeah NONE. You have to be, by the Constitution 25 to be elected.

    I’ll stop right with your insane twaddle comparing the two generations.

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  33. @the Q: Something from the 1930s that might be of interest: click.

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