We now live in a world where it is extremely easy to float around conspiracy theories and spread misinformation. As a result, it becomes crucial to speak the truth and call out such attempts to spread deliberate misinformation. Because the truth matters.
Here is a moment of truth, and it is now time for you to speak up on your behalf so that opponents cannot stifle the bill at this very crucial time.
Iranian misinformation campaign with Universities:
A bunch of Iranian students are spreading misinformation by mischaracterizing the Fairness bill with negative labels such as – “Chinese Exclusion Act”. This is nonsense. They are merely doing this to create a controversy that doesn’t exist. These Iranian students want to preserve their unfair advantage and to oppose the bill that creates a system of equal treatment under the law for all immigrants. And as part of their disinformation campaign on social media and in Congress, these students are emailing their University Presidents, Chancellors, Provost, International Students Office, and everyone they can get a hold of and asking them to oppose the bill.
Please click on this link to see the sample of the misinformation campaign waged by these Iranian students.
These Iranian students have created fake social media profiles of different ethnicities (including conservative right-wing social media profiles) to create a false impression and to spread misinformation about the Fairness bill. With their misinformation campaign, they are trying to peddle some sort of moral authority (because of the Iranian ban by the outgoing administration) to only push for their supremacist treatment and to make sure that they continue to enjoy preferential treatment at the expense of immigrants from China and India who are currently banned from ever getting a green card due to a 195-year wait.
The truth is, that the concerns of these Iranian students have already been addressed by the Durbin-Lee amendment. Yet, they are deliberately creating last-minute confusion in the hopes that they can delay passing the bill, hoping that it gets pushed to the next Congress.
The truth is the Fairness bill helps every Employment-Based and Family-based backlogged immigrant from all countries, including China. Here are some of the benefits for Chinese immigrants:
- Immigrants from China and India have the longest backlogs. The Fairness bill allows immigrants from China to get their green cards quickly, rather than having to wait for 30-40 years due to per-country caps.
- The bill will also speed up the process for Chinese immigrants in the EB-5 category, instead of having to wait for 7-10 years.
- Like immigrants from every other country in the world, skilled immigrants from China will also be able to file for Adjustment of Status even when their priority date is not current. This will enable immigrants to get EAD work-authorization, change jobs, and travel.
- The Fairness bill removes the deduction from the current green cards allocated to immigrants from China every year due to the Chinese Student Protection Act of 1992, this deduction was put in place to off-set the increase in immigration of Chinese nationals after Tiananmen Square in 1989. But now the Fairness bill addresses this deduction of green cards from the visa numbers allocated to immigrants from China.
However, to peddle their own agenda, Iranian students are spreading this misinformation to create a new constituency (i.e. Universities) that the bill is excluding immigrants from China, which is simply not true. The bill, in fact, helps Universities to recruit students and allow qualified skilled immigrants to stay in America and pursue their research and their American dream. Why else would it have the support of all 100 Senators? Support like this is unheard of on an immigration bill in Congress.
Fact-Checking the Iranian misinformation campaign:
The truth is, under the current law, since 1952 it has been illegal for anyone associated with any Communist party to get a green card. Under the existing law – INA 212(a)(3)(D) – there are already provisions to prohibit issuing visas for anyone who is an affiliate of a totalitarian party or communist party. And Section 9 of the bill that passed the Senate on December 2, 2020, simply reinforces the same provision, and it specifically prohibits green cards for members or affiliates of the Chinese Communist Party or Chinese military.
So, anyone making a claim that ‘there is a new provision or restriction’ in the Senate bill, simply needs to just read INA 212(a)(3)(D). In addition to that, DS-160 visa form (required when applying for any visa to the US) one must declare if one is a member of the communist party or foreign military. Also, form I-485 to file Adjustment of Status requires the applicants to declare if one is a current or former member of a communist party.
Nothing has changed under Section 9 of the bill that passed the Senate on December 2, 2020, except that this bill reiterates that the “Chinese” communist shouldn’t get a visa, which is already stated in the current law since 1952. But to preserve their own unfair advantage and at the cost of the principle of equal treatment under the law for all immigrants, a bunch of Iranian students are propagating misinformation that no one from China will ever be able to come to the United States. This is simply not true. In fact, (as pointed out above) the immigrants from China will be significantly hurt if Congress would not pass the Fairness bill immediately.
The overall system is very large. And these Iranian students are trying to create confusion in this large system so that the Congress gets calls from universities, and then in the middle of this artificial confusion, even though the bill has been around in some form for over a decade, some members of Congress may ask for clarification and time to review, and as a result (because of the artificial confusion they are trying to create), we could miss the window to pass the bill this year.
This is why it is VERY VERY important to speak the truth to dispel any misinformation, and not be afraid to speak out as loudly as possible.
We request you to please send the following message to the Universities where you are/were associated/graduated. Please also send this action item to your friends, former classmates, colleagues, neighbors with a request to urgently take action:
- Please send a message to your University President, Chancellor, Provosts, International Students Office, Government or Legislative affairs office, and any other Professor or Head of the Department that you might know.
- Please feel free to edit and phrase the request that is most effective.
- If possible, please use your University or alumni email to send out this communication.
SUBJECT: Need your URGENT SUPPORT for HR.1044 – The Fairness for High Skilled Immigrants Act.
Dear <>, <>, International Students Office:
By way of introduction, I am an [alumna/alumnus] of the prestigious institution. With that background, I have been one of the most ardent advocate, supporter, and ambassador for the University.
I am reaching out to bring your attention to the fact that a small subset of students is spreading disinformation about a bill called the Fairness for High-Skilled immigrants Act (H.R.1044/S.386).
This bill ends discrimination in our immigration system and eliminates what is a de facto ban on Indian and Chinese students and skilled immigrants from ever receiving a green card. Because of the simple and non-discriminatory nature of the bill, it passed 100-0 in the U.S. Senate, including the support of all Democratic, Republican, and Independent Senators. However, I have learned that a group of students, who object to equality in the law and want to maintain supremacist treatment for their nationals, is spreading misinformation about the bill.
Here are the facts about the bill:
- The current skilled-immigration system discriminates based on country of birth. The bill ensures that immigrants are no longer discriminated against based on their country of birth and instead all immigrants will be treated equally under the law. Equality and Equal treatment under the law are the principles that I learned at the University. And it is time for the University to now stand by and uphold these exact same principles and not discriminate against anyone based on country of birth.
- This bill will massively accelerate international enrollment because it will reopen the closed American dream to students from two countries with the largest populations, which are the biggest source of students for the United States. At the moment, immigrants from China and India are effectively banned from receiving employment-based green cards. This is because discriminatory per-country limits on green cards force immigrants from high population countries to wait 100+ years for a green card (well past our life span). So, when the Fairness bill passes and that ban is lifted, many more students from large population countries are likely to apply to US universities.
- It is a universal truth that those with preferential treatment or unfair advantage under any unfair system will always try to stifle the efforts to change the unfair system to a system based on the principle of equality. I am told that a handful of a small subset of students from Iran seem to think that they have some higher moral authority to speak on behalf of everyone. And they are cunningly trying to gain leverage over you to make you do something immoral by trying to wrongfully draw a parallel between the immigration bans by the outgoing administration and the Fairness bill. The truth is that the Fairness bill is about treating everyone equally under the law. And I view any opposition to the Fairness bill as a direct attack on me and my family from seeking equality in society. And I urge you to please not take a position that directly discriminates against me and my family.
- The purported opposition is from Iranian students who have been told to oppose the bill because it will make their green card wait time just a little longer, which will be equal to the wait time of immigrants from every other country. But unlike the current situation where students from China and India are for all intents and purposes, banned from receiving green cards, Iranian students will be able to travel and change jobs under this bill while they wait for green cards. This is exactly why the Fairness bill passed unanimously in the Senate with the support of all 100 Senators. It would be a tremendous shame for our University to be in anything other than full support of this bill.
- To preserve their own position of preferential treatment under the current flawed system, a small subset of students from Iran are spreading misinformation that the Fairness bill excludes immigrants from China, which is simply not true.
The truth is that since 1952 it has been illegal for anyone associated with any Communist party to get a green card. Under the existing law – INA 212(a)(3)(D) – there are already provisions to prohibit visas for anyone who is an affiliate of a totalitarian party or communist party. And Section 9 of the Fairness bill that passed the Senate on December 2, 2020, with Unanimous Consent simply reinforces the same provision, and it specifically prohibits green cards for members or affiliates of the Chinese Communist Party or Chinese military, which has already been in the law since 1952.
So, on this specific aspect, nothing has changed under Section 9 of the Fairness bill. If anything, the Fairness bill ensures that the immigrants from China and India will get equal treatment. If Congress would not pass the Fairness bill immediately, immigrants from China and India will continue to be discriminated against, under current law.
Therefore, I ask you to please not pay attention to the propaganda of ethnic supremacist students and accept the common sense that all 100 Senators would never support a bill that causes the problems claimed by these Iranians. I ask you to please stand up with me to promote the principle of equal treatment under the law and not discriminate against me and my family.
I am happy to discuss this issue at any time convenient to you. In the meantime, I respectfully ask you to please take this communication into consideration when assessing your advocacy regarding this bill. I further ask you to please resoundingly support the Fairness for High Skilled immigrants Act (H.R.1044/S.386).
[Insert your Full Name] Class of [Year of Graduation]