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Sexual Orientation & Illegal Aliens: A legal Dilemma

Updated on March 23, 2012

Being Gay and Illegal-A Legal Dilemma

Sounds bizarre, sort of like a "very odd couple". Two phrases or situations that create a lot of anger or discussion, yet, here it is.

Two men, obviously gay. They are in love. They are married. They were married in that brief moment of time in California when it was legal to marry. That is no longer the case. It is now illegal. Marriages occurring during the brief moment of time are not valid in the eyes of the law. One man is a US citizen, one man is an admitted illegal alien but has been in the US since his teens. His parents, were illegal, but are now permanent residents with green cards. His sister, born in the USA, is an American, her gay brother remains illegal and never got a green card.

R U following me?

So, this couple is now facing court situations on two fronts: the illegality or legality of their marriage in California and the problem of his immigration status, which is illegal. The Court want to allow ICE to deport the man back to his home country. They state that because he is married to a US citizen, that cannot happen. Yet, the status of their marriage is also being looked at. They are claiming that because they are gay, they should be like any couple.

Many non-citizen spouses married to US citizens are allowed to stay, yet, even if the marriage was valid, this spouse is illegally in the USA. End of story. Most other illegals caught are deported back and should he also be? Should there be an exception for gays? Is there marriage legal? Does being married to a US citizen always grant the non-citizen spouse permanent residence or a fast track to getting citizenship, which of course, another parallel issue here. If granted, this is what the illegal gay man will do, no doubt. But, it is more complicated because this man has been here since his teens and many would say is "American" because his sister is a US citizen and even his parents.

Is it fair to allow a non-citizen spouse, whether gay or not, to get a fast track to citizenship because of marriage? It is far faster to marry a US citizen than going through all the money and paperwork it requires the "single" way.

As you read it, I am sure not all your answers will be yes or no. What do you think?


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