Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2008


This Note aims to contribute to current dialogue by raising issues of fairness, responsibility, and human dignity that merit special consideration in any immigration reform proposal regarding the laws that apply to lawful permanent residents who have committed crimes. Part I analyzes the underlying motivation for the enactment of the immigration laws that were passed in 1996. Part II utilizes a case analysis of issues faced by deportees from Nicaragua to illustrate how the foreign policy of the United States affects the governments, economies, and migration trends of other countries. Parts III and IV borrow from the analysis in Part II to dispel the rhetoric about national security that has been used to promote mass deportations, and to suggest that deportations of longtime lawful permanent residents may not be in the best interest of the United States or its neighbors. Part V sets forth a simple, straight-forward recommendation for legislative reforms that would promote fairness in the removal process of lawful permanent residents.