Immigrating the “Right Way”: The Saga of “Illegal” Tyson Nash

On the May 21 issue of the Arizona Republic columnist E.J. Montini narrates the travails of Tyson Nash, the current hockey analyst for the Phoenix Coyotes.

Nash is a Canadian citizen who has lived in the U.S. for 15 years but does not have a green card. In other words, Nash is an illegal.

Nash has been trying to immigrate, as Montini calls it, “The Right Way,” but has been frustrated by the official bureaucracy and his status of immigrant remains.

Montini laments Nash’s difficulties. After all, Nash has been a good father to his American-born children, a good (if “not quite legal”–Montini’s words!]) citizen, a steady worker and a good tax payer.

Curiously, this characterization contrasts with the widely-held portrayal of the Latin American illegal as one who abuses public assistance and is an inconsistent worker who pays no taxes.

Montini left out several important points from his encomium. Nash is an illegal who has received princely treatment. Unlike most “not quite legal” (“illegal”) immigrants from Latin America, Nash need not worry that immigration officials will show up at his workplace to arrest him despite his open admission of being an illegal.

He has no reason to fear that a police officer will profile him and stop him for a putative traffic violation in order to check his immigrant status. Nash is immune from local Sheriff Arpaio’s antics. Nash’s offspring will never be dubbed “anchor children.”

Why? Nash is white and such are the advantages of being white.