Posts Tagged ‘Marraige’

Updated: Saturday, 17 Jul 2010, 7:16 PM EDT

Published : Saturday, 17 Jul 2010, 7:16 PM EDT

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Erwin de Leon got legally married to his partner, the Rev. John Beddingfield, in the District of Columbia this past April. D.C. and a handful of states now recognize same-sex unions.

But the married couple may face a dilemma in a year or two, when de Leon completes his doctorate. His student visa will then expire, and he may have to leave the U.S. for his native country, the Philippines.

“I cannot get a green card [for] staying in the U.S. because we are a same-sex couple,” explained de Leon. “Different-sex couples can get married and apply for a green card. And they’ll have it in a few months.”

Federal law does not recognize same-sex unions for immigration, taxation, or inheritance purposes. They are also no survivors benefit from social security.

Some liberal Democrats in Congress are moving to change the law, at least for immigration purposes. “Right now, too many same-sex, bi-national couples face an impossible choice: to live apart, or to break the law to be with partners, their families, and their children,” Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Illinois) told a news conference this week. “That’s not good for them and it’s not good for the rest of us, either.”

The group of legislators is determined to give same-sex marriages the same immigration rights that heterosexual marriages get. They are planning to add that kind of language to a comprehensive immigration reform bill.

Proponents of immigration reform plan to push Congress to decide the issue before the November elections.

via Immigration Reform May Include Same-Sex Couples.

I’ve been having some discussions with some of my friends and co-workers recently regarding what would happen to same-sex couples in either debate: the right to marry, and the right to immigrate into America.

When I saw this article, the only thing that came in to my head was: “It’s about time this came out onto the table.  The main reason why I am so deeply affected by immigration rights and other civil rights issues, is because I am gay and find myself directly in this situation.  Should I be able to marry my partner, and we can both live here harmoniously with everyone else, or should we be living in fear and dread as this immigration debate rises to a national level.

What a hope.  What a dream.  I really hope that this can become an American reality in the future.