Don’t Dream It’s Over

Protesters come together to express their freedom of speech (Courtesy of Pixabay

Protesters come together to express their freedom of speech (Courtesy of Pixabay

One of the most controversial topics in America, immigration, has recently agitated the American people after President Trump removed DACA on September 5th, 2017. DACA, or Deferred Action of Children Arrivals, was an executive order made by previous president, Barack Obama. This action would ultimately allow 800,000 undocumented immigrants, who were brought here as minors by their parents, to be protected from deportation. There were mixed responses over the fact that President Trump took down this Act that has been on going for 5 years now.

“I don’t think removing DACA will be effective in any way, shape or form. The whole basis of the program was to protect the children of people who came to this country illegally, and every person is background checked and required to go to college or have some diploma. By forcing these people out of the only country that they have ever known will only harm the country. We will be losing so many hard working people, who in every way are Americans, except on paper,” expresses junior Camille Poindexter.

In addition, DACA beneficiaries, also referred to as Dreamers, have to follow an extensive amount of requirements to be eligible for this program: background checks, proof of residence for five consecutive years before June 2012, and the possession of a high school diploma, GED or the current attendance in a school to name a few. The children of undocumented immigrants also had to be less than 16 years old when they first entered the country to meet the prerequisites of the law.

“I feel like people like us, immigrants who immigrated here legally, take a really long time to become permanent residents. I know people that took them up to eight years just to get their green card. As long as [the Dream Act] doesn’t negatively interfere with the people legally coming here, which I’m pretty sure it won’t, even though I know that it wasn’t their [children of undocumented immigrants] fault that they were brought here because they were minors, there should still be a balance. Other than that, I’m all for it as long as the children of undocumented immigrants meet all the requirements to be part of the new law,” states junior Chelsea Evangelista, an immigrant who moved from the Philippines when she was 11 years old.

President Trump removed DACA to allow a new process where Congress partakes in making the law, which is not what happened when Obama made the executive order, not allowing Congress to touch it. A similar act has been proposed to Congress multiple times all the way back to the Bush administration in 2001, but it has yet to be passed. DACA, however, allows Dreamers to obtain work permits, health insurance, driver’s licenses, and the ability to go to college.

“It doesn’t affect anyone I know, personally, but it does affect someone I look up to. He’s basically been here since he was about five… and even though he is extremely financially stable, unlike other people that might be facing this who might not be as financially stable, I mean his whole life is here. He’s grown up here, all his friends are here [and] his family. It’s kind of ridiculous to have a person deported to a country they’ve never even lived in, and don’t even speak the language,” shares junior Allie Rojas about her role model.

Lately, President Trump has defended the Dreamers on Twitter saying, “They are good, educated and accomplished young people [who] have been in our country for many years through no fault of their own.” He also insists that there will be no amnesty or guaranteed citizenship in the new law, the GOP only want to allow people to stay here.

“I would’ve tried to apply for citizenship… As soon as I turned eighteen, if I had been here since I was five, that would [have been] really really important to me to have gone through those proper steps to be an actual citizen of the United States, if I want[ed] to stay here. If I had gone to high school here and benefited from free education and those types of things, then that would be my goal, to have my citizenship so there wouldn’t be an issue or concern,” says History teacher, Crystal Divers.

Although President Trump gave a six month window for Congress to work on DACA, there have been many protests all around the country. Whenever the work permits expire, however, these Dreamers will be on the limbo and could be filed for deportation, if Congress does not act. At the moment, however, the Dreamers will be able to be protected during the six months of uncertainty.

“Do I think that the new law will be effective? Well, with all the things that [President Trump] has done, he hasn’t really given me a reason to believe that he will make anything effective that would benefit everyone. The same with Congress… I don’t know, I just feel like…it’s a lot of minorities and just a lot of people who built this country to where it is and I feel like he’s [President Trump] forgetting that. America is just a mixing pot of everyone, and if you take that away, then that’s not America. I feel like it will affect a lot of people and…I sincerely think he doesn’t care,” shares senior Jocelyn Dobson.

There is still hope for a law that appeases most of Congress and the Dreamers. Many stories are coming out to light for sympathy from legislators and for the people of the U.S. to hear.


“The outcome, after the six months are over, will be the basis of a law that provides some sort of coverage for children of illegal immigrants. I’m not sure how extensive those privileges will be, but I think that we’ll have something that’s good… for them, but also that it keeps most of the rights and the freedoms of America open to the citizens only, instead of those who got a grandfather clause,” says junior Andy McDonald.