This morning Karin and I were scheduled, re-scheduled, to have our second appointment with USCIS in San Jose. This is the “marriage interview” appointment. We did not go, and here’s why. Our vigilant lawyer, Lavi Soloway, has worked with our federal elected representatives to get some clarity on this issue. He has requested a postponement of our interview until issues with DOMA and its resolution are settled. Wow!
So, we didn’t go to the 8:45 a.m. appointment. And, though being nervous about what might happen, we feel good because we have excellent help. Whew!
I asked Lavi if he would write up the situation so that I didn’t make any mistakes. As I sit at my trusty laptop, I can see Karin outside playing with her plants in the garden. She is at peace today and I am trying to be too. I so want all of this to be over! Stress and uncertainty are not things we want any longer in our lives. We want a decision, a binding decision, one that lets us drop all this and move into our older years with fewer worries. As Karin says on the video Stop the Deportations and DeVote Campaign did recently, “we just want what everyone else has, nothing special…”
So here’s our update – VERY recent!
On Tuesday June 12, 2012, Karin and I were scheduled for an interview
at the local U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in San
Jose, California. Our lawyer, Lavi Soloway, founder of Stop the
Deportations – The DOMA Project, working closely with the staff of our
Congressman Mike Honda (D-CA-15) and with the senior staff of our two
United States Senators, Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Dianne Feinstein
(D-CA), formally requested that the District Director of the San Jose
Field Office of the USCIS reschedule our interview. The rescheduling
request is based in part on a May 10 letter written by Senator Boxer
and 16 other Senators to Secretary Janet Napolitano, Attorney General
Eric Holder and President Barack Obama, requesting guidance on case by
case abeyance requests. We are hopeful that Karin’s interview will be
rescheduled to a later date so that there will be enough time for
USCIS to properly consider our request that Karin’s green card case be
held in abeyance until the final resolution of DOMA, Defense of
Marriage Act, given the specific circumstances of our case and the
current legal developments (four decisions striking down DOMA since we
filed the green card petition in January!).
We are continuing to work closely with The DOMA Project
(www.stopthedeportations.com) to persuade the Obama administration to
immediately implement an “abeyance policy” so that all married lesbian
and gay binational couples are safe, have lawful status and identity
documents until their green card applications can be approved once
DOMA is either struck down by the Supreme Court or repealed by
Congress. No green card case filed by married same-sex couples should
be denied when we are so close to the demise of DOMA.
So right now, you know as much as we do. I will keep updating as things move along. If you are a same-sex binational couple, I think you can take heart from this. If you are afraid to share your situation, I think you might find that getting good legal help will be the best move you ever made to help your life be more settled. If you are an ally, good for you – and good for all of us!
In case you haven’t seen our latest video, or if you just want to see it again, here’s the link:
And, here’s my regular sign-off on my posts.
Immigration Equality, Out4Immigration and Love Exiles Foundation are the three groups working on our issue – and the three groups who receive whatever money comes in from sales of my book, Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, Findhorn Press, 2011.
My newer project, with David W. Ross, whose new film “I Do: The Movie” will be out in June 2012, is a portrait project of LGBT binational families, United by Love, Divided by Law Portrait Project. It expands the reach of my book and will keep adding portraits as we find couples and funds to add more. We will hold events to assist the work being done for our families by Lavi Soloway and Stop the Deportations – The DOMA Project. Check out the site at
and see the Facebook page at
To follow Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law, go to its Facebook page at:
Read an excerpt of my book at this link: http://bit.ly/eIyGxh
Order online from the publisher at this link:
Elizabeth Gilbert wrote the foreword to my book. She is an ally in our fight and has suffered from the immigration situation herself as part of a binational relationship. Though she and her boyfriend were able to marry, they know what the drill was and they advocate for LGBT binational families. We like that!
Remember, too, you can follow me and what I am doing and thinking and reading on twitter @tornapartbook