Saturday, April 30, 2011
In this video, MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts talks to a married bi-national same-sex couple. The foreign-born spouse is facing a deportation hearing on May 6th.
To reiterate once again, this is happening because the infamous “Defense” of Marriage Act (DOMA) forbids the federal government from recognising a legal same-sex marriage for any federal purposes, including immigration. The Obama Administration has correctly concluded that the law is unconstitutional and indefensible and the Republicans in the US House have, predictably, aligned themselves on the side of hatred and bigotry by choosing to spend taxpayer money defending the law.
One day, DOMA will be repealed (by Democrats) or, probably sooner, will be struck down by the Supreme Court. But until one or the other happens, the government is continuing to not only refuse to recognise legally married same-sex bi-national couples, but it’s actually persecuting such couples by aggressively enforcing the immoral and unconstitutional DOMA.
While this is being sorted out, the government must immediately stop all deportation proceedings against legally married same-sex bi-national couples. To do otherwise, to continue to persecute such couples, is to practice gratuitous cruelty, and no country should do that—especially not one that likes to call itself the “land of the free”; the US has to prove it values freedom, and actions speak louder than words.
Update 7 May, 2011: The deportation proceedings against Henry Velandia, the legally married spouse of US citizen Josh Vandiver (the couple in the video above), were halted Friday (US time), the AP reported. The decision came one day after US Attorney General Eric Holder ordered a similar case put on hold. HOWEVER, this is only a delay until December—they have seven more months of living in limbo, not knowing if they can live their lives together as any other married couple can, or whether the US Government will forcefully rip them apart.
All such cases must be put on hold while the fate of DOMA is determined, however long that may take.