A reader writes:
I'm an American who has also decided to leave the US. However, it's not because of HIV status. It's because of my concerns over healthcare. You see, my European wife has a chronic disease that worsened soon after we moved to the US two years ago. I have insurance, but with a sick wife and two children, our bills are quite high. Worse, should I ever change jobs, or get fired, I have no doubt our insurer would drop us, or at least dramatically increase our premiums.
I'm a senior exec in a software company. I've always wanted to run my own company, and I have an idea that I think will work.
But we'll move back to Europe before I take that risk. In the US, I just cannot be without healthcare for any length of time. I wonder how many other potential entrepreneurs are discouraged from striking out on their own for this very reason?
You essentially ascribe bad immigration policy to homophobia. I work at the NIH and I've come to a bigger conclusion; the US simply does NOT have a rational immigration policy. I see so many brilliant scientists from abroad that simply can't stay in the US because of absurd rules. These are exactly the kind of people that every country should want to have. There is no logical explanation for having such strong barriers to attracting such educated and capable people. While I don't argue that immigration policy may be homophobic, I think the larger issue is that there is no immigration policy; the system is just a bunch of inhumane and illogical rules.
I agree entirely. I was only citing two examples of needless discrimination in immigration laws. There are so many others - including the failure to expand H1 visas and to retain talented foreigners who come for education and want to stay and contribute but cannot. We have become so obsessed with illegal immigration that we do not face the irrational, talent-phobic, bureaucratic and cripplingly expensive legal immigration process. It's impossible to contemplate a serious immigration reform, because the political system is incapable of any such action. And so the stupidity endures.