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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Six Bahá'í leaders arrested in Iran; pattern matches deadly sweeps of early 1980s

This is a very disturbing development.

One would think that the detainment of the top national leaders of the largest religious minority in Iran, a country under high scrutiny now ought to garner headlines, yet given that that religious minority doesn't engage in heinous suicide bombings or other violent tactics (despite the cruel attacks leagued against it since its inception), if recent experience is any guide, I guess it just won't be saucy enough for the media....

I hope someone will prove me wrong...

An International Family Contemplating International Problems on the International Day of Families

Did you realize that if you get married to a woman you love from another country and decide you want to live abroad, that you will not necessarily be able to bring her back with you for a visit, to say meet your own parents??

I am a U.S. citizen and have been my whole life. Neither my wife or I have or are working in any sensitive position, we've never been convicted of a crime, and yet I can't take my own wife home for a visit?

The irony of ironies is that if she wanted to emigrate to the U.S., there would be no problem. But they told my wife that due to her relative youth (in her mid-twenties), etc. she was considered a flight risk! If we immigrate, it is ok, but if we go for a short visit to visit my parents, she's a flight risk??

Please, someone, help me understand this!!!

I can't appeal for her (she has to apply herself for a mere visit, and her English is just fine, even though that would be pretty irrelevant if we wanted to visit our parents, I'd say). Do all U.S. citizens in such a position have to resort to appeals to their representatives to TAKE THEIR OWN SPOUSE BACK HOME FOR A VISIT??? She tried this twice no less. By the second time, our home here was in her name, she had a job with an American company, and she is still seen as a flight risk?

Thankfully, the "Legal Immigration Family Equity Act" allowed people to come into the U.S. as "nonimmigrants" while they applied for immigrant status, but this doesn't help us I have read that one is discouraged from applying for immigration if one does not plan to stay.

This is not to mention the discouraging instances of rudeness I and my wife respectively encountered at an embassy and consulate respectively, making it hard for my wife or extended family here to get any kind of good impression from the government for which I am otherwise proud to be a citizen.

What is more basic than a right to marry whom you choose? And what meaning is that right, if you can't share that unity with your own family??

I was watching a program here in China about a fish farmer who developed his business by going to the U.S., learning something or other, etc. While I'm happy for him, how is it possible that a U.S. citizen cannot come back for a visit with his own wife, but one (and DEFINITELY NOT JUST ONE) with no prior connections to the country, can come freely?? Business--even a small business--from a foreign country trumps a native (U.S.) citizen and his family's rights???? Now, we can apply for our newborn son with no problem, but is that "family friendly" to allow one's son to visit, but not one's spouse?

Sorry, I am only this exasperated because I believe in the higher ideals espoused by the U.S., and find this situation just inexplicable... Something really needs to change here...

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