Immigrant Tuition

In order to become an American attorney, one must meet numerous stringent requirements. In California, however, those prerequisites do not include a legal residency status.


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A state Supreme Court ruling announced Thursday will give illegal immigrant Sergio Garcia the opportunity to pursue a legal career in a case that has been pending since 2012.

The decision follows Gov. Jerry Brown’s approval last year of a measure advanced by the state legislature granting such accommodations. With no apparent hint of irony, the very individuals who flout our immigration law on a daily basis are now being tasked with interpreting and arguing legal matters in courtrooms across the state. Furthermore, similar cases are currently awaiting a decision in New York and Florida.

For his part, Garcia is “glad it’s over” and hopes his case will signal a similar change across the nation. Of course, plenty of opponents see the glaring hypocrisy of rewarding a continual lawbreaker with a law degree.

Garcia blamed an “extremely, extremely conservative” court for the delay in his career advancement; however, it is obvious the decision was not rooted in rightwing ideology.


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He complained that it took “longer to win my right to practice than it took to actually get my degree.”

The prospective lawyer’s freewheeling use of the word “right” would serve him well if he were to seek a position in the ACLU or some similarly leftist legal foundation. For millions of Americans who respect this nation’s immigration process, however, this ruling is seen as an affront to those who became citizens through the proper channels.

Center for Immigrations Studies Executive Director Mark Krikorian called the ruling “an absurdity,” describing it as “one more step toward eliminating the distinction between legal and illegal immigrants.”

A court statement described Garcia as a “diligent and trusted worker who has made significant contributions to his community.”

Even conceding that depiction, though, it is clear that each of those contributions was made while he was a criminal inhabitant of America. The left is involved in a full-blown crusade to legitimize illegal immigrants; and there seem to be fewer more immediate ways to do so than transforming these scofflaws into attorneys.


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