Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law

Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law

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by Judy Rickard
     
 

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The horrors that thousands of lesbian and gay couples face are detailed in this moving political and personal story of immigration and love. As Judy and Karin’s legal battles reveal, when only one half of a gay couple is an American citizen, immigration struggles are confounded by the fact that the partners cannot legally marry in most parts of the United

Overview

The horrors that thousands of lesbian and gay couples face are detailed in this moving political and personal story of immigration and love. As Judy and Karin’s legal battles reveal, when only one half of a gay couple is an American citizen, immigration struggles are confounded by the fact that the partners cannot legally marry in most parts of the United States. With resources that outline which organizations can help and what the challenges and the realities of this situation are, this reference reaches out to couples, their friends and family, and anyone interested in assisting by offering advice and camaraderie on this subset of the gay marriage issue. Royalties from the book, which is published in association with Immigration Equality and Out4Immigration, go to groups working to overcome immigration denial for gay couples.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The Defense of Marriage Act and other federal legislation have forced Rickard and her British partner, Karin, to live much of their lives apart. Rickard collected stories from some of the other 36,000 LGBT couples, in which one partner is an immigrant, forced into itinerancy and convoluted living arrangements to abide by immigration requirements that don’t recognize their relationships, such as resettling in a more tolerant country where neither member originates, enduring constant fear of seeing their undocumented partner deported, or opting for a sham citizenship marriage with a member of the opposite sex. Rickard recounts the byzantine hoops through which she and Karin jump, including savings-draining trips abroad every six months to keep in compliance with Karin’s visa. Their story demonstrates the strain these laws take on couples and the families they are forced to leave behind much of the year. Rickard puts a human face on a political issue and offers actionable steps for her readers: encouraging them to support the United American Families Act and contact their congressmen or women. (May)
From the Publisher

"Rickard puts a human face on a political issue and offers actionable steps for her readers: encouraging them to support the United American Families Act and contact their congressmen or women." —Publisher's Weekly (March 28, 2011)

"[In Torn Apart] you’ll meet people willing to fight for their relationships, expatriate themselves for their relationships, and bankrupt themselves for their relationships. This book is really a collection of love stories, detailing the lengths people are willing to go to in order to preserve our families." —Angel Curtis, OutSmart Magazine (April 2011)

"Incredible tales of 'Rube Goldberg' type arrangements by American citizens simply to be able to stay with their foreign partner . . . readable and important. . . . The stories are the power and she doesn't dilute them." —www.DavidMixner.com

"A compelling wake-up call . . . inspiring, often sad, even infuriating, tales of same-sex couples caught in the machinations of antiquated U.S. immigration policy . . . chockfull of ideas for how to help." —Windy City Times

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781844095483
Publisher:
Findhorn Press
Publication date:
04/01/2011
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Judy Rickard has worked in positions to promote civil rights for nearly 40 years as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) activist. She served on her region’s LGBT political action board for 15 years, diversity committees for two San Jose mayors, and various Santa Clara civil and human rights committees. She also has worked with multiple San Jose University presidents on diversity issues and educated political candidates and elected officials on LGBT topics. She lives in San Jose, California. Elizabeth Gilbert is the author of Eat, Pray, Love.

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Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
bigbearphx More than 1 year ago
Thousands of same-sex binational couples are kept apart by U.S. immigration policies that don't just fail to recognize that two people of the same gender can have a positive, fulfilling and committed relationship, but actually target the non-citizen half of such couples as a security risk. Despite the work of activist groups such as Immigration Equality, Love Exiles and Out4Immigration, and numerous attempts by understanding elected representatives to push through legislation to eliminate this unfair policy, many couples have left the US to live in other countries, or to live nomadic lives traveling to a variety of countries, in order to avoid being split up. The book begins with a forward by Elizabeth Gilbert, celebrated author of "Eat, Pray, Love," who is happily married to a man from Brazil. She points out the hypocrisy that they never had a problem being together, since immigration law allows citizens to bring in their fiancés, citizens or not. The fact that same sex couples are denied similar treatment, simply because we don't have the option to marry under federal law, has made her an activist for a change in policy to eliminate this blatant discrimination, and inspired the author to tell her story. Judy Rickard and her partner Karin, a British citizen, have endured long separations and taken trips simply to be together as much as possible. She also introduces us to over a dozen additional couples with similar (and worse) stories, with tales of their partner being dragged from their home in the middle of the night, of forced, immediate deportations, living in exile to avoid prosecution, having to pay thousands in legal fees while fighting life-threatening illnesses, The book covers idiosyncrasies in existing rules for "green cards", student and work visas, binational citizenships, and humanitarian visas that work against same-sex couples. And it discusses how such couples may choose to arrange "sham" marriages to opposite sex partners, just to get the opportunity to be in the same country together. It's a powerful indictment of a legislative policy, formed in the name of homeland security that is running amuck and violating the basic rights of thousands of Americans. The book includes an extensive appendix of research sources, applicable legislative cites, proposed laws, and things you can do to help. All royalties from the book are being donated to lobbying groups involved in the effort. Not an easy read, but an important one. Five stars out of five. - Bob Lind, Echo Magazine