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Saul Arellano Now Lives in Mexico


More than a year ago, when Elvira Arellano, a Mexican and the single mother of a U.S.-born son, was deported to Mexico, I wondered who would care for her son. She had been a cleaning woman at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. But then, after she was arrested and told to appear before immigration authorities, she took refuge in a Chicago church for a year rather than be deported. When she left the church to give a speech in Los Angeles, she was arrested and deported. Saul had participated in rallies and met with Washington politicians in a campaign to persuade U.S. immigration officials to let his mother stay in the United States.

A Washington Post article published yesterday says that Saul, 9, now lives with his mother in Mexico. So he didn't stay in the United States, as some children who have U.S. citizenship do when their parents are deported.

The article, "Mixed-Status Families Look to Obama," talks about how some families with both documented and undocumented members hope that Barack Obama, when he becomes president, will push for legislation that addresses immigration reform and enables the undocumented members of such families to become legal.


Free trade includes liberal immigration policies. Right now with the anti-immigration stance by both parties and the protectionist climate, I doubt immigration will be the top of anyone's agenda except for deportation and hate. It will only make our economy worse but when people hate, they don't think of those things. The country seems to be reaching out to protectionist, insular strategies.

Putting a human "face" onto all the stories of immigrants helps us "filter" the policy debates that seem to erupt with increasing frequency.

Saul and his mother's struggle is an example of the affecting stories that help all of us consider the actual lives behind the often negative public discourse surrounding immigration.

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