The asylum decision that you just achieved is admirable.  Willfully sending people back to their country of origin if there is credible evidence that persecution will occur there is an affront to international legal principles and virtually any standard of morality.

I would take it one step further, however.  The United States’ own record in asylum cases is far from pristine.  We require too much evidence in cases involving claims of Muslim women who face retaliation because of fundamentalist beliefs in their countries of origin.  Similarly, very practical difficulties remain in considering asylum claims made by gays and lesbians (even though the penalties they could face if deported often rooted directly or otherwise in religious beliefs).

Note to readers: I will have a review up tomorrow about the new film “Religulous” which I saw this evening.  Here’s a hint: I liked it better than Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ”.

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