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Crossing the Border

Updated on March 29, 2011

The following story is true. Nothing has been changed in any way.

I was leaving Korea and returning to California at the end of August, 1995. A friend of mine who was traveling with me couldn’t return with me due to the fact he was kicked out of the country twice already. He had to return home a much different and longer way that I found out is still being used today.

My friend is from England and while on vacation decided to stay. What he did on the advice from others was to get a Social Security Card. He received his card that had printed on it ‘Not for Employment’. Didn’t really matter for with the card, he was able to get a California drivers license. A driver’s license that is renewed through the mail he has been doing so for a very long time. Giving him ID for employment and for all intended purposes, prove of citizenship.

And as time moves on, we are at the Seoul airport in Korea where he is unable to board the plane to return to America. Seeing as he had been kicked out of the country before, his name was on a list of people not allowed to reenter the country. So after he made changes to his flight schedule we said our goodbyes as I returned to California and he journeyed to Toronto, Canada. I must point out that while at the Korean airport I carried his belongings with me as he carried the essentials in his backpack.  And arriving at International airport in Toronto, he took a bus ride to Niagara Falls.

From there he strolled around like a tourist and as he crossed over to the American side he simply showed the border guard his California driver’s license who then letted my friend on through without a second thought. My friend then continued on to Greyhound bus station to where he simply traveled back to California. Picking him up at the bus station, we got something to eat as he went over his travels across country. The next day, his vacation was over as he went back to work.

After September 11th many changes have been made but the loop holes still remain the same.


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