by William Teach | April 27, 2015 7:08 am
Here we have Roberto Suro (a professor) and Marcelo M. Suarez-Orozco (a dean), both at California schools of higher education, making a different case
Think of Undocumented Immigrants as Parents, Not Problems
SOMETHING happened while the immigration system in the United States got broken, something that should change the way we talk about fixing it. Years went by, and nature took its course. More than 11 million unauthorized immigrants settled into our communities; many formed families and had children. Now at least one of every 15 children living in the United States has an unauthorized parent, and nearly all of those children are native-born United States citizens.
Think of that statistic, one in 15, the next time you drive by a school or a playground. Think of those children living with the knowledge that the federal government can take their parents away. Common sense tells you that the threat of a parent’s deportation will exact a terrible price.
Of course, every year parents are sent to jail, separating them from their children. Oh, and speaking of jail, California’s prison system is swamped with violent and dangerous criminals who also happen to be illegal aliens. Emergency rooms in California hospitals have been forced to close due to being swamped by illegals. That exacts a “terrible price” on those here legally. The illegals exact a “terrible price” on the education system, welfare, other social safety net programs, as well as helping deflate actual wages.
By one estimate, more than six million children are paying the price of having an unauthorized immigrant parent, and more than five million of them were born here.
Who’s fault would that be? That’s right, the parents.
Once you take this evidence into consideration, the challenges change. The nation has an interest in regulating immigration, yet it also has a stake in its children. Current policies do not succeed in regulating immigration, but they do force these children into life-stifling insecurity.
On this, they are mostly correct. We have immigration laws, yet those laws are very often ignored. The Democrats pander heavily to illegals, and many in the Republican party do the same. Rather than enforcing law and order, controlling the border, doing their job for those who overstay their visas, they’ve created a situation where illegals stream into the country, as well as overstay their visas, with a feeling that there will be few consequences. And they know if they have one or more kids, they will have people treating them with kid gloves.
But the American sense of fairness and system of justice have long embraced the notion that the “sins of the father” should not be visited on the children. Reasonable minds can debate whether there is blame to attach to the parents. There is no reasonable case to be made for punishing their children, who are citizens of the United States. Yet they are punished every day.
They can take their kids with them. But, hey, I’ll tell you what, let’s compromise. The parents will be allowed to stay in the country till the children turn 18, legal adults. During that time period, the parents must wear tracking units. They will be ineligible for any taxpayer funded government programs. They must show that they have broken no laws other than being here illegally. They are welcome to apply for citizenship, but, otherwise, after they leave the country when the children become legal adults, they are not allowed back in.
Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.
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