Protecting Our Borders

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The Washington Post reports that the INS locked up a 19-year-old college student (a Canadian born permanent resident of the U.S.) for 15 days when he tried to return to the U.S after visiting Tijuana during spring break. Paperwork problems.

"I think what's happened is the INS—a terribly inefficient bureaucracy to start with—has now merged with Homeland Security," [the student's father] said. "So now you have a terribly inefficient agency on testosterone. They are power-hungry and they are desperate to catch all these Mexican and Canadian 'terrorists.' "

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  1. Robert Trott writes:
    “The WP story says that the victim is actually NOT a US citizen.”

    Thanks for the correction – the post has been fixed.

  2. It just goes to show how much easier life would be for Canadians if they just asked us to annex them.

  3. Nineteen years without getting a Green Card? Sounds like someone just wasn’t paying attention to little details like aliens need to have them.

    In most cases, a legal immigrant who is a minor cannot apply to recieve legal citizenship untill they are 18 or 21, even if their parents have already recieved citizenship themselves.
    After that the process to become a citizen can often take over several years.
    The status of permanent residency that the boy holds entails that although he is in the US legally, he is not permitted to re-enter the US if he leaves.
    I think that it is a pretty frivolous law, especially in the case of an immigrant wishing to visit relatives, and not being able to in fear of losing legal status.

  4. As a Canadian Citizen, who has never resided in the US and does not hold a Green Card, I’ve made many crossings at the Tijuana/San Ysidro border carrying no more than a passport, all without hassle or incident.

    I have a feeling that next time, Jake will be carrying a passport.

  5. Heh, good call Madog. I lament our lost opportunities to capture Canada, in the Revolution and War of 1812. (And only *half*-jokingly.)

  6. There are links to four articles about Iraqis or AQ trying to come in from Mexico here.

    Here’s a couple links about force reductions in AZ.

    Not related, but: when I type in ‘reason.com/hitandrun’ I go to a redirect page; clicking that link takes me to what I typed in. Apparently you’re only expecting people to come to this site from reason.com.

  7. yeah, i live with someone who didn’t get her work visa despite sponsorship from a US company. the lawyer said this is the first time its happened since he’s been doing them (seven years) and there are doubts whether her boyfriend will get his visa renewed as well. i suspect these applications aren’t being reviewed very thoroughly or properly (or not at all) under the new directorship of homeland security.

  8. I’ve been off my medication for a few days preparing tax returns, but I think it’s obvious. The IRS–an agency nearing collapse from a failed reorganization and a 40 year-old computer system–planted a few rambos in the INS so that the public would think the INS is the worst-run agency in government. Doesn’t take a guy off his lithium to figure that out!

  9. geophile,

    Didn’t the Canadians/British seriously embarress the US in the War of 1812, when the latter tried to invade Canada? Canada 1, US O. 🙂

  10. “The IRS–an agency nearing collapse from a failed reorganization and a 40 year-old computer system–planted a few rambos in the INS so that the public would think the INS is the worst-run agency in government.”

    I had an even more conspiratorial thought back when the first wave of Middle Easterners were asked to register with the INS.

    Consider this quote:

    “As many as 700 Middle Eastern immigrants, mainly Iranians, have been detained by US officials in southern California after they turned up to register in accordance with the requirements of new residency laws.”

    Now, let’s say, despite working as an upper level administrator for an agency which putatively enforces our immigration policy, you’re an open borders advocate. How would you express your support?

    Perhaps you’d do what the INS did: arrest hundreds of people, create a PR mess, get the ACLU involved, etc. etc.

    I have no support for this idea, but perhaps this might be instructive.

  11. I’m sure Michele Malkin is delighted…

  12. The WP story says that the victim is actually NOT a US citizen. Whether the law is right or wrong it is pretty plain about what alien residents have to do. Nineteen years without getting a Green Card? Sounds like someone just wasn’t paying attention to little details like aliens need to have them.

    Having dealt with the INS I know what a hideous bureaucracy it is, but this could have happened at any time and not just now with Patriot Act etc.

  13. My boyfriend is from mexico he does not have a green card what is the procedure to get it?

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