Friday, August 28, 2009

SOS! Bi-national same-gender couples need your help!

By Madison Reed

The photo at the left is the person I LOVE, my #1, from the Republic of Belarus. We are a family unit.

But my country, the United States of America, forces me to either exile myself, end my relationship with him, or live in the United States without him. Why? Is this surprising to you? For 5 years we've lived apart - 5,000 miles away from each other. 

Love is the universal attractive force that knows no boundaries. Love goes beyond what we call sacred. I happen to believe that the force of Love alone is proof of the existence of a Creator. Because how could such a beautiful and perfect feeling just happen?

Americans fall in love with people all over our huge world of diverse cultures, religions and races. And the U.S. immigration law accommodates these new bi-national relationships, bringing the new couples together, uniting the American citizens or permanent residents with their foreign born loved ones. These happy couples are always guaranteed a home in the United States, where they can build their lives together. They are always grateful to the country that welcomed them.

But there is one group of Americans that the United States government bars from benefiting from the same fundamental human rights enjoyed by the rest of Americans; such as the right to legally live with your foreign partner in the United States, by sponsoring him or her to permanently immigrate to the United States.

We're business owners, soldiers, realtors, artists, doctors, judges, mayors, nurses, teachers, politicians, mothers, clergy, fathers, sons and daughters, and people of every faith. But we're gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (GLBT), and that alone denies us full equality and happiness.

Please help Americans like me who have foreign born same-gender partners. We are denied the same bundle of rights that has always been a given for heterosexual Americans. We are denied the right to bring our foreign loved ones to the United States for permanent residence and family unification purposes. U.S. immigration law is proclaimed to be a family uniting law first and foremost, created especially for uniting Americans with their foreign nationality loved ones, so that families won't be split up, such as parents with their children, fiances with fiancees, and spouses with each other. But that vital right is not extended to GLBT Americans (gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender). IT IS WILLFULLY AND DELIBERATELY DENIED TO US!

For more information about what you can do to help change the lives of hundreds of thousands of people like me who are adversely affected by this grotesque hateful discrimination and denial of our human rights, visit:

A Story of Two Couples:  For Gay Binational Couples, Defense of Marriage Act Leads to Deportations, Exile and Separation  (Mini documentary movie about the lives of two binational couples.   Please watch and share.)

The DOMA Project:   http://stopthedeportations.com

Watch: Excluded, the Movie (Please watch and share)

Inger and Phillippa's story (Movie; please watch and share)

Our Stories: United by Love; Divided by Law

More personal stories of binational couples separated or living in exile

LGBT Binationals Must be Included in ICE Deportation Guidelines



allvoices

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

I understand you completely. I am not from America, but my love is, and he lives there. We love each other 2 years already. Today is our anniversary.
Ivan

Anonymous said...

I am totally with you. I, too, have a foreign partner (he is from Poland). We are currently 4300+ miles apart, although our hearts are right beside each other, always... I hope that America will change immigration law to allow us, as US citizens, to enjoy ALL the rights US citizens deserve.

Anonymous said...

Happy anniversary Ivan!

My anniversary in October 25th. What nationality are you?

I'm very happy that you found my blog, and thrilled to hear from you. We need to build a stronger, tighter community, and work together to make the needed changes happen.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your article. I'm Canadian and have been married to my American same-sex partner for almost three years, together for five. We have decided to move to Canada so that we can actually be together. We are one of the lucky couples, although our inability to have Jen sponsor me has really hurt us financially and emotionally. I think that most people don't know about the plight of bi-national same sex couples, and if they did they would be inclined to agree we are being treated as 2nd class citizens in the U.S. I would like to think that if more Americans were aware, they would pass the UAFA and end DOMA. I'm an optimist.

Anonymous said...

Congrats Ivan!! I also hope law changes, even though I got to immigrate to Canada in order to be together I am from Peru and he is from the US, we have been here 3 weeks (Canada) and we like it so far .
Hope someday we can come back for our friends and his family.
and thank you for the blog and sharing your story

Madison Reed said...

It's wonderful to hear from all of you!

Please make sure your American sweethearts contact their members of Congress to urge our House and Senate members to sign on as co-sponsors of The Uniting American Families Act of 2009.

It's also part of an educational process, to familiarize our elected representatives with the bill. I belong to a group called Out4Immigration. We've been doing a Uniting American Families Act information campaign. We've been contacting congressional staff by telephone, writing handwritten letters to Members of Congress, sending staffers emails and following up with phone calls, asking them to ask our Senators and Representatives to become bill co-sponsors.

There's a box at the top left of this blog linked to the Gay Rights section on Change.org. Click on it and it will will take you to a page with a pre-written letter that you can automatically send to your members of Congress. It's very easy to do, and only takes minutes.

Anonymous said...

I cross- posted it.Thanks for all your efforts, Madison!
Lee

Anonymous said...

View our DuPage Green Video at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8D-DZwVp3A.

We have an hour long DVD of the forum.

Bob Mueller
DuPage Green Party
Westmont, IL

Madison said...

Thank you Bob Mueller. I'm listening to it now.

I initially had the same feelings about Obama - that he was no sincere about his wish to help us, even after he released his statement to the GLBT community prior to his election. But I do believe he may be the best hope we've had for change in a century. Maybe Obama's just a catalyst!

Anonymous said...

you're story makes me sad. I'm not Homosexual or anything like that but you are right. Love is love no matter what the government says. You have a right to be with him. Keep fighting I support your love 100%. someday the laws will change i hope that for the two of you they change sooner than later.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous, thank you for your kind words!

Anonymous said...

I read this and Im heartbroken about it. Me and my partner are a bi-national couple too, all though today we live together but in a matter of weeks I may have to leave the US as my visa is expiring, We are scared and anxious..but we are not going to give up. We have applied for canadian residentship and hopefully it will work out soon.But there will be months of seperation even possibly years...and I try not to think about it but this is the reality I live with everyday of my life. I hope that someday you will be united with your love...and I with mine.
god bless.

BearChub4U said...

I testified before the NYC City Council's committee on the Adoption of a resolution encouraging the US Congress to approve the UAFA. My former BF and I were together for 2 years, first with me traveling over there to be with him, and then he moved to NYC for 10 months on a student visa, but was unable to secure a sponsoring employer, so was unable to stay. Being from a non-EU country in Europe, he had to go through even more qualifying steps to get a visa, even to visit EU countries, much less the USA. Now he has found someone over there, who he doesn't need a visa to be with. My testimony brought tears to 3 members of the council, and they passed the resolution. Thanks to Christine Quinn for inviting me to testify.

Madison said...

Wayne, I'm deeply sorry to hear the sad news of the destruction of your relationship. Christianity has caused so much devastation to people. Yes, I said Christianity! It is what it is.

Are Muslim radicals not part of Islam? Similarly, all followers of Jesus who claim allegiance to the Christian religion need to speak up, and say and do something to stop what the institutions of their religion are doing to innocent people such as the LGBT community. The offensive against us is intolerable.

Anonymous said...

I'm disgusted at this country! How could they not let loved ones be together? I am a 13 year old girl who has resently found her interest in girls. Over the past 6 months i have been doing research, and so far all i've read is the LGBT community can't do this, the LGBT commtimunity can't do that. It makes me sick!! Last time i checked this was called a "Free" country! What the hell is wrong with these people? (Please excuse my language) I thought it was State BEFORE Church! I guess not. I hope one day that will change and EVERYONE will be free. For now we can just hope that our efforts for a better country, world even, will make a differance.
Wishing for the best to you all,

Emily,