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Trump disappoints again with the reversal of DACA

Dreamers face their worst nightmare

Julie Yoo Bin Lee, Editor-In-Chief

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On June 15, 2012, the Obama administration implemented the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, a program that gave immigrants temporary protection from deportation if they had come to live in the U.S. illegally as children.” Nearly 800,000 DACA recipients have received the opportunity to work and drive legally and to go to school with federal financial aid legally through obtaining work permits and social security numbers. President Trump announced on Sept. 5 that he intends to terminate DACA in 6 months if Congress does not act to uphold it. 

Because DACA beneficiaries are mostly undocumented youth and young adults, the end of the program would prove to be detrimental to students. The cruel decision would affect high school students applying to colleges as their options narrow down tremendously. Private and out-of-state universities may have to be crossed off the list because students need social security numbers to receive federal financial aid. In addition, college students would not be able to support themselves without work permits. Heightened fear and anxiety hovering over undocumented students could reduce attendance, as many choose to avoid applying for admission in the first place.

Eliminating DACA would not only negatively impact its recipients, but also the nation as a whole. According to the Center for American Progress, California would ultimately lose around $11.6 billion of its GDP, while other states would lose between $1-6 billion. Many employees that make meaningful contributions to our nation would lose their jobs as well. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, there are more than 250 Apple workers who are affected by the repeal of DACA. DREAMers are not just individuals who want the best for themselves, but they also actively participate in our society and economy.

Former President Obama stated recently that “DREAMers want to start new businesses, staff our labs, serve in our military, and otherwise contribute to the country we love.” Furthermore, he said that repealing the program “casts a shadow over some of the nation’s best and brightest young people”, which is true. An online survey by the Center for American Progress proves that 36 percent of recipients over the age of 25 have a Bachelor’s degree or higher, half of recipients are currently in school, and most are employed.

However, in a statement announcing his decision to eliminate the program, President Trump stated that DACA has only resulted in the entrance of more people crossing the border, specifically “people who would become members of violent gangs throughout our country.” Through the statistics of DACA beneficiaries, it is indisputable that Trump’s statement was only an assumption made through personal opinion.

Some may argue that DACA is only rewarding immigrants that have broken the law. However, children that followed their parents to the United States did not have control over the situation, and therefore are considered exempt from breaking the law. This is why the majority of DACA recipients are between the ages of 15 to 36, according to the White House. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman stated that “no court has held DACA unconstitutional,” but the constitutionality of the program still has not been determined by courts. As of now, Congress has much to deal with.

Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Florida have taken up much of Congress’ recent concerns. Indeed, supporting 800,000 undocumented immigrants would require money that needs to be spent on the restoration of the areas destroyed by the natural disasters. However, individuals paying taxes and keeping the economy cycling include DACA recipients. Although nearly 75 percent of DACA permit holders are employed and pay their taxes, they do not receive all of the benefits that their money pays for. For example, Medicare is not available for DACA recipients. According to the Social Security Administration, undocumented immigrants pay almost $13 billion for the retirement trust fund, but only receive $1 billion back. These are only a few of the many unfair exchanges that undocumented immigrants are a part of, and they only ask for a return of their hard work and money.

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The student news site of University High in Los Angeles, California
Trump disappoints again with the reversal of DACA