In June 2012 President Barak Obama established an American immigration policy called the “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” or “DACA.” This program allowed children to apply for DACA status if they were under the age of 31 before June 15, 2012 came to the U.S. before turning 16 and have continuously lived in the country since June 15, 2007. Those protected under DACA are known as the “Dreamers.” These individuals were granted the right to live, go to school, and work in the United States. However, five years since the implementation of DACA, President Donald Trump now plans on getting rid of both DACA and the Dreamers.
The United States’ foundation was built on immigration. This country’s unique blend of races and ethnicities can be attributed to immigrants coming to the United States from all over the world. Terminating DACA means abandoning those individuals who have contributed to the great diversity that makes this country. This is why I will have to disagree with President Trump. Continuing to allow these individuals to live in the U.S. and expand our country’s culture and help us grow is how we make America great.
Although the actual policy of DACA states that Dreamers, “must have come to the U.S. before turning 16,” many of them were much younger when they arrived. These children came to this country with their parents unaware of status. They are our peers and our friends. The United States is the only home they have ever known, they have grown up here and built their lives here just as I have. How are we as country going to hold them accountable for their undocumented status?
Kaitlyn Kalicatzatos, SRN