The ABC report goes on to reveal
He was listening to a group, including two permanent legal U.S. residents, tell him the federal government is crushing their dreams of full citizenship and even threatening their ability to travel without fear of detention, all because of their employment in Colorado’s nearly two-decade-old legal marijuana industry.
I was led down a path to confess in my interview that I broke the law, that I willingly had known that I had broken the law.
Medical marijuana has been legal in Colorado since 2000, and recreational weed became legal in 2014. But cannabis is still illegal in the eyes of the federal government, meaning agencies like the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) can simply ignore the marijuana laws of Colorado and 33 other states — not to mention the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Oswaldo Barrientos said he and his mother emigrated from El Salvador 29 years ago — when he was a baby — and he got his green card at 13. By the time he turned 30, he felt it was time to finally trade it in for full citizenship.
“The American life is the only life I’ve known and lived,” he told ABC News.
But Barrientos said he felt blindsided during his citizenship interview last fall when the immigration officer suddenly started asking questions about his job at a marijuana dispensary, without first explaining the potential consequences of his answers.