The Portnoys of Marystown are living in hell on earth hounded by the Canadian authorities. There are of course two sides to every story but nothing in the past of The Portnoy's can justify what the Canadians have done to this family. It is entirely unacceptable in a country that prides itself on being an example of democracy and humanitarianism for the globe.
The essense of the argument for or against deporting the Portnoys have been bandied about to exhaustion. The primary question is a simple one. Are the Portnoys entitled to live in Canada? The Canadian Government has to decide based on its pre-formed heuristic if this family can stay. They have decided that cannot. It would be quick and easy to end the discussion at that point. They've made their decision -end of story... ?!
In the case of the Portnoys though it becomes important to investigate the very process of government itself. Can we have confidence that the federal government has made the right decision on behalf of 30 million Canadians, and especially 1/2 million Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. Can we have confidence that the best decision was made? For that we need to look beyond the paper work and consider the human interests in this story. We have our answer based on running an application through a machine... now let's run some facts through the people of Canada and let them decide.
The Portnoys are not two Israeli's and their Kids. We are in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada - The Portnoys are three Canadian Children, two of them are Newfoundland and Labradorians, with their siblings and parents.
This is a family that has the support of the community in which they live. The Portnoys are from Marystown.
This is a family who have a great deal of support in this Newfoundland and Labrador. The Portnoys are Newfoundland and Labradorian.
As Canadians we have to ask ourselves what has happened to lead up to this terrible situation for this Newfoundland and Labrador family, and what do we do as a civilized community to rectify the situation?
The situation was caused by a bureaucracy that made the final decision. It is the result of a decision made by a group who do not live in Marystown, they do not even live in Newfoundland and Labrador - but they make decisions for us. There is a fundamental flaw in this federation when a Newfoundlander or Labradorian has absolutely no say into who their neighbour is. To the question of who is a Newfoundlander, who is a Labradorian... that decision is made elsewhere. That is fundamentally wrong!
The situation with the Portnoys is the result of this inept bureaucracy. A federal department and it's arms length committees that take a decade to stamp an application. A decade passes. A decade in our life, a lifetime in the five Portnoy children. They are Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, they go to school with our kids, they contribute to the youth culture of the community... Then a small minded ineffective bureaucratic organization reaches down from another land and turns the only world they've known upside down. A faceless bogeyman who snatches their father while he is running a errand to help a friend. A monster who threatens daily to steal away their mother if she should step into the daylight.
So we humbly look to the scales of justice:
On one side of the scale, the argument to deport the Portnoys. The weak accusation against Alexi that refers to a petty crime as a youth. An accusation which has been adequately explained.
On the opposite side of the scale we have the inefficiency of the immigration committees. Add to that the children who are born and bred Canadian, and their rights as Canadians. Consider the children who were born in Marystown and are members of that community for the entire duration of their young lives. Add to that the tremendous support of the community in Marystown. Add to that the tremendous support of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians all over this island and in the Big Land. Add to that the health and welfare of two of the children who receive specialized attention in their community.
Now make your decision.
But wait, there is one more consideration. The immigration committee has made it's decision. There is a strong defensive stance that says that the immigration committee has to have it's own autonomy. It has to have it's own integrity, it has to be immune to criticisms from mere mortals. That bull-headed self preservation has to be a factor. Place that on our scales of justice. This one is very heavy because it goes to government power and bureaucratic self-preservation.
This is now very much a decision in the public arena. The immigration authourities need either to give us the solid reasoning behind its ineffective, inhumane, inept, and weak arguments or it's time for them to listen to the many voices from "down-east"
They have a lot to answer to. Better late than never.
The Portnoy Family Website