Wednesday, July 13, 2022
Lil Wayne: A Crimmigration Tale
Lil Wayne is an American rapper. So you might be wondering why I'm posting about a U.S. citizen on an immigration blog.
Here's the thing: Lil Wayne is interesting from an immigration perspective because of his inability to get a visa to play/tour in the UK. Back in 2009, Lil Wayne pled guilty to a weapons charge stemming from the 2007 discovery of a loaded gun on his tour bus. He was sentenced to 12 months in prison, though he served only eight months due to good behavior.
Lil Wayne's latest application for a UK visa was denied in June 2022. (He wanted to perform at the Strawberries & Creem festival.) The UK's Home Office (their immigration folks) told Rolling Stone magazine: “Any individual who has been sentenced to a custodial sentence of 12 months or more must have their application refused.”
All-in-all, this tale strikes me as a fun comparative law real-o-thetical to cover in your crimmigration class. You could flip the facts -- make Lil Wayne a UK citizen with the same gun conviction. What would the results be for a US visa to play at a music festival?
Moreover, it would be an opportunity to play one of my all-time favorite SNL clips--Lil Wayne and Eminem on Their Valentine's Day Single: