Ningún ser humano es ilegal

On Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the government would begin the process of terminating Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the Obama administration policy that protects many young undocumented immigrants.

Words can’t explain how fearful I am in this moment. Not for myself, but for several of my friends, and the 800,000 other DACA recipients who could be forced to leave the only country they’ve ever truly known. 

All because of the xenophobic beliefs of our current presidential administration, if you can even call it that.

DACA recipients are not criminals, contrary to popular belief. They are not menaces to society. They are young people who are just as much American as someone born and bred in this country.

It is a requirement that DACA recipients complete high school, serve and/or be honorably discharged from the military or be in college. In addition, DACA recipients cannot be found guilty of a felony or serious misdemeanor, or they will be deported.

Many critics of DACA, especially those who wanted to “make America great again,” argue that DACA recipients have a negative impact on the economy of this country. 

That argument, intrinsically, is a flat-out lie. DACA recipients actually boost the economy. Many DACA recipients are well-educated and still in school. Seventeen percent of them are working toward an advanced degree. 

In some years, the pool of DACA recipients will be comparable to immigrants with H-1B visas (for highly skilled workers). Highly skilled workers boost the economy. Ending DACA will do nothing but worsen our economy.

Another argument made for ending DACA is the legality of the policy, according to Sessions. While the Supreme Court deadlocked 4-4 last summer on the constitutionality of DACA, in a letter to the Trump Administration in August, over 100 law professors argued for the legality of deferred action. 

Regardless of their accomplishments or the legality of the policy, ending DACA isn’t just an economic or legal wrong, it’s a moral wrong of the highest degree. DACA recipients don’t just deserve to stay in this country because they don’t commit crimes and are working toward advanced degrees. 

They deserve to stay in this country because they’re humans. 

They’re people with families and friends. They’re people who are simply trying to build a life for themselves and their loved ones. They’re people who have no real life outside this country.

To move forward with the termination of DACA, the Trump administration proves once again that they have no interest in doing what’s morally right, or even what’s best for the economy. They simply want to make the country more white, more rich and more xenophobic.

Ningún ser humano es ilegal. No human being is illegal.

Thanks for reading.

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