from my blog at http://theatleeappeal.com/
By now everyone has heard of the DREAM Act. Immigration has been put on the back-burner as of late due to other issues such as legislation on taxes comes close to a crucial deadline. Illegal immigration is another one of those polarizing issues that gets tempers and emotions running wild. On one hand, you have people who believe that there should be no such thing as borders, or that America stole parts of the Southwest from Mexico. On the other hand you have people who believe that America has established its borders and that laws regarding immigration need to be followed and enforced. The DREAM Act attempts to lay a pathway to citizenship for young people who are in our country illegally at no fault of their own.
So how does one try to qualify for this act? First off, you must be an illegal immigrant and you must have “good moral character” (which seems to be rather contradictory for someone whose description starts with illegal). You must have entered the United States prior to the age of 16 and been in the States for five consecutive years before the bill has been enacted (how you can determine this for someone who is “undocumented” seems a bit tricky). You must have graduated from a United States high school, or have obtained a GED, or have been accepted into an institution of higher education (which means you must have had your education up to this point subsidized by the legal citizens of this country). If you meet those requirements, you can obtain citizenship by either joining the military or attending college for two years (graduation is not a requirement).
Why am I opposed to something that looks good, on the surface, for kids who have been brought into my country illegally by their parents? First off, this is nothing more than an incentive for someone to illegally migrate their family into our country. As long as your kids just hang around for a few years, they can qualify to become citizens even if you get deported or not. Then once they are citizens, they can apply to have you move in with them. Nevermind the fact that we already have a problem with illegal immigrants and “anchor babies” (pregnant illegals cross the border to give birth so their kid can automatically be considered a citizen). This bill would give us double trouble on that front. Less enforcement of immigration laws, more encouragement to break them.
Reason number two: America is still suffering from high unemployment and it is costing the taxpayers a ton of money on social welfare programs like food stamps and unemployment insurance just to name a couple. According to the Office of Management and Budget, federal and state welfare spending will top out around $900 Billion for 2010. The Migrant Policy Institute estimates that this bill would grant amnesty to another 2.1 million illegal immigrants. When you add in the fact that the overwhelming majority of these illegals are extremely poor and offer very little in regards to skills in the workforce, they will put even more strain on an already cash-strapped country. When so many unskilled laborers enter the market, it will only push wages for low-skilled jobs even farther down because the supply of unskilled labor would be higher.
Third: The DREAM Act would grant in-state tuition and “residency assistance” for these potential citizens. Uhm, excuse me? I was fortunate enough to have my parents pay for some of my school, but I was still forced to take out nearly $40,000 (over $40K if you include interest) in student loans and work in order to afford out-of-state tuition while attending Auburn University. Where the hell is my DREAM Act? My DREAM Act is to send $300 to Sallie Mae and Great Lakes while only marginally reducing my principal each month. Damn, if only I had moved to Mexico so I could jump the fence! Washington is basically trying to grant scholarships for doing just that.
Fourth: We have entered an era in which the modern liberal believes that everything is a right. UNC Chapel Hill held a rally in support of the DREAM Act last month, and here’s what the organizer of the rally had to say: “We don’t want to stand by while injustice is happening nearby. We believe education is a right and not a privilege, and so we decided to act.” You want to know what happens to countries who have actually had this attitude for a while? Just watch what is going on over in the UK. For the longest time over there, higher education was a “right”, and higher education was heavily subsidized. Well, the country is going broke partly because of this and it is now telling students that they must actually help out in paying for their own education. See what happens when you create a society of moochers?
In closing, here is a reflection of my opposition. The DREAM Act will only encourage more people to cross our borders illegally, therefore doing absolutely nothing to ease our illegal immigration problem. The DREAM Act will put more unskilled laborers into an already crowded unskilled and unemployed labor force which will drain more money out of the taxpayers in the form of unemployment assistance. The DREAM Act will grant in-state tuition and housing assistance while making it impossible for an actual citizen to enjoy the same benefits. Finally, the DREAM Act basically says that education is a right and everyone is entitled to higher learning, even if you aren’t here legally. I guess that means the government should force people to become teachers so that this “right” can actually be properly executed. Bottom line: This is the worst immigration bill since Ronald Reagan decided to grant amnesty to three million illegals in 1986. Fortunately, at this point, there does not seem to be much of a chance for Obama to sign this bill.