April 1, 2013
By Don Tagala, ABS-CBN North America Bureau
NEW YORK – The most popular undocumented immigrant in the United States believes that the inclusion of members of the LGBT community is crucial for any immigration reform bill to be considered fair.
“I’m all for an immigration bill that doesn’t exclude anyone, including same-sex couples,” said Jose Antonio Vargaz, a Pulitizer prize winning journalist who openly admitted that he was brought to the United States illegally and that he is gay.
In Chicago, a Filipino man is turning into a woman.
Mark Ilada is undergoing a gender reassignment procedure to fulfill his dream of becoming a woman named “Dahlia Jane Dee.”
Ilada lives and works in the US on an H1-B temporary work visa and is in a relationship with a man for more than 4 years.
He says that even if they get married, the current immigration system does not provide same sex couples and transgendered women like “her” the ability to change their status via a spouse’s immigrant petition.
Ilada may soon be legally a woman after the sex-change operation but gender-reassignment is also not recognized by immigration.
“I want everybody to have equal rights, whether you’re a boy or girl, straight, gay, lesbian, transgendered, bisexual, whatever you are, you should have the right, you are a living person and that love knows no gender.,” Ilada said.
“Marriage for everyone is inevitable, equality is inevitable, this idea that my equality is tied to your equality,” said Vargas, “and I bet you if we have immigration reform, if we have a bill that leaves out the LGBT community the first people who will go against it are Dreamers, undocumented youth of all sexual orientation.”
But immigration attorney, Rio Guerrero believes that the Obama administration made a tactical move not to include discussions about adjustments of status thru same-sex marriage in the immigration reform proposals.
“I think they’re right to do that, I don’t believe the Republicans would ever agree to that and the Obama administration understands that if DOMA falls, then they don’t have to legislate anything, they simply have to wait for the existing law to fall and allow same-sex marriage to exist in the federal level,” he said.
Meantime, Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, a member of the gang of 8 issued a statement saying it’s premature to say that a deal has been made.
While New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer acknowledged that a few issues remained to be settled, he and others don’t expect there to be problems.
Deal or no deal Vargas and the LGBT community have one thing in mind – the US needs an immigration system that works for everyone, including the LGBT community.
Illegals don’t deserve a free bonus amnesty including their anchor babies.
In fairness opinion , this Guy has no shame nor has any claim that he has a right to jump over on people waiting on line. If he wants to be considered he needs to go back in line . All his doing is showing his ugly face bullying the government as if hes got an authority to push everyone under his thumb . I certainly do not want any one in the country with this kind of atittude.
I believe Mr Vargaz is one of the most arrogant illegal alien here in the US.
This Guy is so ignorant and thinks he can get away with his criminal law-breaking actions is appalling . We will call you for what you are a criminal law breaker if you dont like Illegal Allien . A person entered a house un-invited and rob a house is called robber criminal , a person who killed is a killer criminal and in this instance you broke the law by invading a country , its called illegal criminal. Anyway you spin it , its still a crime , dont make yourself clean and righteous as you did’nt have permission to legally stay in the country which means you are illegal criminal period . Mr Vargas , you can not dicatate and force your way in USA , you are dangerous to the society , once you get what you want , it wont stop there , you will find another reason to bully and will do more harm , sabotagging every rules and law of the land.
Sobrang kapal mukha mo Mr Vargas , ikaw pa ang napaka arrogant , ikaw na nga ang criminal. Ayaw mong matawag na illegal allien , eh di criminal allien nga ang tama para sa iyo.
Dee, I fear that all your statement is true indeed.