COMMENTARY | President Barack Obama will announce on Friday afternoon his decision to help those young people, known as DREAMers, to stay in the United States and build their lives in the country they have known as home since childhood -- without threat of deportation.
DREAMers are those belonging to the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors organization.
These youth are a strong and productive young group. They began rallying for the right to stay in the place many of them were raised but not born, instead of being sent away to lands foreign to them where many of them don't even speak the language. This is not only the fair decision to make, but the only logical and humane one. These young people are just as American as young people who were born in the country.
These are young people, mostly Hispanic, who have lived in the United States since they were children. This law will apply to those who came into the country before the age of 16 and who are younger than 30; they must have graduated from a high school in the United States or served the military and have no criminal record. Though the law will not grant citizenship to these youth, it will allow them to stay in the country and will grant them the right to work. The law applies to some 800,000 people and also to those already in the deportation process.
While Republican Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas argues, "How can the administration justify allowing illegal immigrants to work in the U.S. when millions of Americans are unemployed?" we also acknowledge that President Obama's administration, just last year, set a record by deporting nearly 400,000 illegal immigrants -- nearly half of whom had criminal records.
Doesn't it stand to reason that if these young immigrants are allowed to work in the United States, and are able to find jobs, that there are jobs to be had? If it becomes legal for them to work in the United States, then employers will no longer get away with paying them less than minimum wage; this abuse by American employers was much of the problem to begin with.
We are finally beginning to remedy the problem.
- Politics & Government
- President Barack Obama