The Fight Continues…

The American immigration system is broken and needs some serious help. Since being in office, Obama has fought to gain rights and earned citizenship for the immigrants. He is working hard to achieve immigration reform for the future. His plan requires anyone who’s undocumented to get right with the law by paying their taxes and a penalty, learning English, and undergoing background checks before they can be eligible for citizenship. It requires every business and every workers to play by those rules as well. Throughout our blog we touched on many of the main issues in immigration: border security, pathway to earned citizenship, immigrants in the workplace and the Dream Act. Barack Obama states in a speech given in January 2013, “Together we can build a fair, effective and common sense immigration system that lives up to our heritage as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants.”

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The American borders are strengthening border control more than ever. Law enforcement is given the tools they need to make our communities safer from crime, enhance our infrastructure and technology, and strengthens our ability to remove criminals and give them the consequences they deserve and defend us from threats to our national security. Border patrol should be increased so that people are not sneaking into the country causing crime and participating in illegal actions. Our goal of increasing border control is for the benefit of immigrants who want to enter legally.

Cracking down on employers hiring undocumented immigrants is an issue that makes immigrants illegally be able to find walk and hinders them from achieving citizenship. Businesses that hire immigrants illegally are cheating out businesses that play by the rules. President Obama talks about this issue on January 29, 2013 saying,

“It means cracking down more forcefully on business that knowingly hire undocumented workers..most businesses want to do the right thing… So we need to implement a national system that allows businesses to quickly and accurately verify someone’s employment status. And if they still knowingly hire undocumented workers, then we need to ramp up the penalties.”

Providing a legal pathway for immigrants to earn citizenship will bring the 11 million immigrants living illegally in the country to come out of the shadows and start to live their life. Not only will it benefit themselves but the economy and welfare of this country as well. When immigrants can live legally they start businesses, buy homes, and live actively in their community to boost economies. After passing certain criteria, there will be no uncertainty of their ability to become U.S citizens. Before being able to get in line for citizenship, immigrants have to register, submit biometric data, pass criminal backgrounds and national security checks, and pay fees and penalties before becoming eligible (whitehouse.gov).

The Dream Act was passed so that every immigrant could earn the right to an education in the United States. We believe that without an education ones opportunities come to the end of the road. Millions of the illegal immigrants living in our country are children who are at no fault. Their parents brought them into America for hopes of a better life. The Dream Act can help these children find the “American Dream”. It is an amazing opportunity for these children.

Throughout the semester, we have expressed our argument for immigration reform. Every individual should be able to achieve the best they can. Our overall goal is for immigration to be available to everyone who follows the rules and do it legally. By following a strict and legal immigration reform plan these goals can be achieved. The “life, liberty and pursuit of happiness” are natural rights that Americans are given, why not extend that to all individuals who are risking their lives to find those rights?

Immigration Reform. (2013) Whitehouse.gov. Retrieved from http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/immigration/earned-citizenship

Could There Be Too Much Border Security?

Our overall argument for this blog is Immigration Reform and how to achieve legal immigration in the best way possible for our country. Border control is a hot topic that comes along with immigration reform. When is there too much border control or is that even a problem? The answer is no, there is never too much security at our borders. Along the border their are small towns in Texas that are expressing their concerns with the increasing border control and they are speaking out about it.

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In the small town of Laredo, Texas, the increase of helicopters and security checkpoints are causing citizens fears to even go into those towns which is creating a loss in business and those neighborhoods to be poor and create crime. Juanita Valdex-Cox, executive director of the immigrant-rights organization LUPE in the Rio Grande Valley says, “We have seen billions of dollars spent on security. And then you think about the real issues as far as healthcare…and a good education” (Margolis, 2013). Those real issues, health care and education, are all direct effects of the crime, drug smuggling and illegal immigration that is happening. Without the increase border security and the push for earned citizenship these problems are only going to get worse and lead to even more issues.

So, for the citizens living down in the Texas border towns who worry about the increase security they should feel safe. Towns like Laredo is where the problem begins and then filtrates to the rest of the country. If border security can stop where the illegal immigrants are entering and smuggling drugs and people then immigration reform can take place. Those towns can then start their road to becoming more developed and independent. They are economically fragile because of their environment and people’s fear to be there. Immigration reform starts with increased border control.

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Margolis, J., Texas Border Residents Argue Against More Security. PRI. (2013) Retrieved from http://pri.org/stories/2013-03-18/texas-border-residents-argue-against-more-security

Maryland Dream Act promotes Immigration Reform

dream actLast year the Maryland Dream Act was affirmed by Maryland Voters. The Dream Act stands for Development, Relief, and Education for Aliens Minors Act. The Dream Act’s two major premises are permitting certain immigrant students who have grown up in the UNited States to apply for temporary legal status to continue their education in universities and colleges, as well as, eliminating federal provision that penalizes states that provide in-state tuition without regard to immigration status.

Rae Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force speaks out about the affirmation of the Dream Act stating, “The United States is built on belief the belief that everyone get a fair shake to fully participate in civic life, and to be able to build a future in the place they call home. This vote does justice to this fundamental principle, and to our common humanity (ngltf.org)”. Immigration Reforms are taking place all over the country. Now that the Dream Act is passed in Maryland, immigrants can now further their education in the United States. Education is the key to success and power, it is also a component that completes the “dream” that American stands for.

When immigrants move to America they have a plan in mind, they are looking for opportunities to turn their lives around for the better. Education is what is going to make that dream happen. Rae Carey also says, “Maryland is building brighter and more secure futures for our individuals…This not only benefits individual students, it makes our local communities, our states, and our country stronger and more competitive. (ngltf.org)”. Rae Carey is completely right. Without education we can not grow as a country. WIth education we can find success in our economy, our army, our local and state governments and most importantly in our citizens.

Below is a video of thousands of undocumented immigrants reacting to the DREAM Act. They are signing up for work permits. It is amazing to see the excitement that these immigrants are showing because they are able to come out in society and start to live freely.

Sarda-Sorenson, I. (2012, November 7). Maryland voters affirm Dream Act with the passage of Question 4. National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Foundation. Press. Retrieved from http://www.ngltf.org/press/releases/pr_af_dream_110712