Retired singer claims wrongful deportation to La Cañada Flintridge
Justin Bieber testified in court Tuesday that he is actually Canadian and not La Cañadan, when, as he claims in his challenge to the revocation of his O-1 visa, he entered the U.S. from our neighbor from the north.
An O-1 visa is issued by the U.S. to immigrants with extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics. Last December, Bieber said he was retiring.
Last August, when Rolling Stone asked Bieber if he had plans to become an American citizen, Bieber responded, “You guys are evil. Canada's the best country in the world.” According to Bieber, this remark, not the unfortunate egg incident, precipitated what Bieber contends is blatant selective enforcement of the immigration laws.
As a result of the deportation order from which he appeals, Bieber is now a La Cañada resident.
Bieber testified in the first day of his trial living that under La Cañada Flintridge’s strict poultry ordinances (Around Town: Do alpacas toe the legal line?” Valley Sun, Jan. 23, 2103) deprives him of artistic freedom, much as a graffiti artist is deprived of the ability to pursue their muse by the California Penal Code and those charged with its enforcement.
Bieber was extensively cross-examined on the distinction between poultry and livestock. As a La Cañadan, he is presumed to know that La Cañada ordinance section 11.32.080 provides that not more than “two horses, donkeys, mules, cows, steers, other similar animals, sheep or goats which are not for the personal use of the occupant of the parcel may be kept, maintained or otherwise boarded on the parcel…” if for personal use.
But Bieber’s lawyer, one Horace J. Rumpole, Jr., told the court that the personal use requirement discriminates against individuals who live in collective settings, such as Sister Wives (tm), Engineering Fraternities and once-fashionable boy bands. In a communal setting, everything is shared, therefore nothing, not even the bagels, are for personal use, argued the lawyer.
Meanwhile the Chief Justice of Ontario, Canada issued a gag order on Wednesday, banning all news coverage of the former pop star. Efforts to obtain comments from the court were unsuccessful. As these new events unfolded, the incident took on international ramifications, prompting the White House to issue the following statement: “The first time the president learned about this was when he read the Valley Sun.”
Many have noticed the paucity of print copies of this week's Valley Sun. Sources revealed today that the missing copies were mistakenly sent by the U.S. Postal Service to Toronto, Canada, due to a Zip code error. As a result of the influx of newspapers, the Canadian judge issued an order to seize all copies of the Valley Sun which mentioned Justin Bieber.
“Out of sight. Out of mind, eh?” explained the judge.
Despite the ban, many Canadians had heard about Bieber. According to a survey conducted by the Electronic Frontier Assn. in Canada, 42% of those polled said they knew about Justin Bieber. Another 22% had heard about La Cañada Flintridge.
Meanwhile, back in court, holding up his egg-soaked shirt, Bieber called the deportation order “a nightmare, a very scary nightmare that continues today.”
--ANITA SUSAN BRENNER is a longtime La Cañada Flintridge resident and an attorney with Law Offices of Torres and Brenner in Pasadena. Email her at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter @anitabrenner.