Friday, June 15, 2012

A step in the right direction - immigration reform

The Obama Administration announced today that it will stop deporting and begin granting work permits to younger undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and have since led law-abiding lives.

Right on, Mr. President!

Details of the plan haven't fully been announced, but here's what we know right now (and this comes from the Huffington Post):  "Undocumented immigrants will be immune from deportation if they were brought to the United States before they turned 16 and are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED, or served in the military. They also can apply for a work permit that will be good for two years with no limits on how many times it can be renewed."

Yes, yes, I know ... the GOP will be gnashing its teeth.  And many people will disagree with me when I say this is good for our country!

These young people did NOT make the decision to cross the border illegally, yet they are being punished for it. Many of them graduated from high schools here - honors classes!  Now they can come out of the shadows and become productive, contributing members of our society.  

Several weeks ago, I ended up in a conversation about this with an associate .  I couldn't believe the venom that spewed from her mouth when this topic came up.  She had absolutely no understanding of the issue, only hatred - hatred that she couldn't even explain!  

I agree with her that border security should be enhanced, but we also need to consider the people already here.

I have my flame-retardant undies on, so take your best shot.  Congress could have passed the DREAM Act, but Republicans blocked it.  Now President Obama has made a move that's good for these young people and good for our country:  if these undocumented men and women get an education, work and pay taxes, we all win.  

Yeppers ... I'd say this is a win-win situation.  Won't that be nice for a change?

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