For many, the American Dream has proved to be far beyond reach. This is the story of our client, Rafael Espinoza Iniguez, as told by his wife, Maria:
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness are birth rights our government sought to protect through a living breathing document known as the Declaration of Independence. These “inalienable rights” have been challenged at times by life’s many obstacles and ironies, some of which are brought about by medical conditions, which are alleviated by research institutions, by economic difficulties, which are alleviated by charities, by social pressures, which are alleviated by advocacy groups, and by injustices, which are alleviated by our government; the institution which has declared to protect our rights as citizens. Our government was designed in its inception as a progressive government by our founding fathers, who were dissatisfied by the tyranny of monarchies, and created this nation with the goal of establishing a just government, recognizing the rights all human beings are entitled to. And so, in pursuing our own life, liberty, and happiness, this is our family challenge:
To present our story in order to advocate for comprehensive immigration reform that will allow entrance into the United States for law abiding and deserving individuals, who have come to this great nation in the pursuit of that same happiness our founding fathers were in search of.
Plainly, this is acceptable if considered by reason and our forefather’s intentions when they built this nation. Our story exemplifies their pursuit of justice through, Rafael Espinoza Iniguez, who is currently banned for life from the United States under the Immigration and Nationality Act for falsely claiming to be a US citizen.
Here are the compelling facts:
• 2002 – Rafael became majority shareholder and President of T-shirt Guys, a successful business with branches in the United States and Mexico.
• 2002 – After presenting a valid 10yr Visa at the San Ysidro border, Rafael was questioned in English, which was not his native language, if he was a U.S. citizen and mistakenly responded “Yes”. He was subsequently banned for life from the United States.
• 2006 – Rafael married Maria Rodriguez, a U.S. Citizen and is currently the natural father of their 3 children (b. ’10, ‘11, ’13) who are U.S. Citizens.
• 2012 – Rafael attempts to cross the U.S. border with his family without proper paperwork for business and family pleasure and is returned to Mexico.
•3/2014 – Maria, Rafael’s wife, is diagnosed with stage IV brain cancer; Chief of General Surgery at Stanford University Medical Center petition’s his member of Congress for Rafael’s presence in order to improve her prognosis.
•4/2014 – 5 members of congress petition the U.S. Consulate in Mexico to allow entrance for Rafael to support Maria during the initial stages of her treatments.
•5/2014 – Rafael is interviewed at the border for entrance and is denied for falsely claiming to be a US Citizen in 2002.
Our family is united and dedicated with a formidable challenge ahead. Fortunately for us the cause is just and the facts are clear. We have the support of 5 members of Congress, the Chief of General Surgery at Stanford, and dozens of business owners, family members and friends. Hundreds of others have found themselves in a similar situation, separated from their family and feeling hopeless. But this isn’t an act of God that can’t be stopped and it isn’t a disease without a cure, like Maria’s cancer. The law forbidding Rafael entrance into the United States is an unjust law that can be corrected with support from Congress and from our government. His case history is well documented, organized and can be made available upon request.
Take a breath, clear your mind, and imagine for a moment being separated from your closest loved ones while they are going through the most trying time of his or her life. How would you feel? What would you do? Help us support Rafael’s cause by spreading the word so that he and others like him can receive the justice they deserve. If you would like to reach out to Rafael’s family please email firstname.lastname@example.org.