I’d love to see a show of hands for how many of you have dealt with work visas, visa renewals, and application forms in a foreign country — I can’t see you, but I imagine that many of you are holding your hands. I am amongst you, as it happens. I’ve been navigating the visa system (first as a student, then as a worker) for the past two and a half years, and I think we can all agree that it’s a pretty difficult procedure.
And it turns out that the musician Pogo, who has become quite famous from his remixes of movies posted to YouTube, has run into trouble with border control in America and, beyond spending a few weeks in jail, has found himself banned from re-entering the States for 10 whole years. Before we get to his plan of action, let’s enjoy one of my personal favorites from his catalog:
Now, to more serious matters.
In order to combat this problem — initially a mistake in visa procedure, originally handled by the agency managing his second North American tour — he has posted a video explaining the situation and seeking help from anyone (lawyer or otherwise) who may be familiar with how to appeal the decision. He has also started a petition, which you can sign here, to get people in Homeland Security to notice his case and work on letting him back in, this time on a proper visa.
Here, he tells his story:
As he is a wonderful artist, and I’m sure many of us can sympathize with his initial error, I encourage everyone to go and sign the petition or provide consultation in any way they can. We can do it!