Thursday, May 20, 2010

A DREAM or a nightmare?

I think that regardless of where you stand on immigration, you probably agree with me that the current situation is a mess. It is a very intense, personal topic for many of us. There is an area where I hope that we can find common ground: the DREAM Act.

Did your parents ever move when you were a child? Mine did. They left Mexico and came to the USA. I didn't get a vote in that decision. Nor did I have anything to do with our legal status or citizenship. Once we were here, I began to forget Spanish and adjust to English. I went to school and was excited about the prospect of college. I obeyed the laws of the US and tried to be a good citizen. Thankfully, my family is here legally. However, there are many, many children who had the exact same choices and opportunities that I did whose parents are not here legally, and they are caught in a never-ending nightmare.

Even though they had no choice in coming here or their legal status, even though they may not even speak the language of their country of birth, even though they may have worked hard academically and have done everything in their power to respect the United States, they must live in constant fear of deportation. There is nothing whatsoever that they can do to fix the situation, no way for them to become legal. Instead, they must abandon their dreams of further education and living their full potential as members of our society and hide in the shadows.

That doesn't benefit our country. It is a squandering of one of our greatest national resources. There is no moral justification for it--these kids were innocent bystanders. Imagine if your parents were from another country and you were in this situation. It could easily have been me. It could easily have been you.

We can do something about this. We can vote. We can encourage our legislators to pass the DREAM act now! Every day that goes by is too late for some. Will you please speak out so that others can get out of the nightmare and live the American Dream?

1 comment:

The ArtsyMama said...

I am so happy you wrote this! My father immigrated here with his parents in 1958, so that they could have better lives. I am thankful myself every day for the opportunity that decision has given me.
As a teacher in an area where the migrant worker population is very high, I am angered every day by the political signs stating, "illegal immigration, is illegal" and how the attitudes of the parents are given lip-service by their children. I see the hurt in the eyes of their classmates who may or may not be here legally but feel guilty and hurt either way and it saddens me.
You are so right about wasting talent and natural resources for something as silly as a piece of paper. I hope that we find a better way.