The United States should welcome immigrants, not deport them
“Illegal” immigrants are confined to insular lifestyles, happy to pay their taxes although they rarely, if ever, benefit from government services. They pay into Social Security — from which they will never see returns. They live under the radar, careful to not draw attention to themselves, working hard, sometimes for lower pay than citizens and with no protections if something goes wrong on the job.
Imagine having to then leave your minimum-wage job because your boss said there must be a mistake because your Social Security number didn’t match your name.
I know it’s not our fault they came here illegally. They shouldn’t have done it. Their parents shouldn’t have done it. Just as it is not their fault their families were oppressed by dictators or sandwiched between conflicting sides of a civil war or born in povertystricken countries.
The U.S. unemployment rate is at its lowest in a decade. If you’ve ever had a “dreamer” steal your job, it’s probably because he or she was smarter than you. If you ever had an undocumented immigrant steal your job, you probably didn’t know it.
Imagine how much more undocumented immigrants could contribute to our economy if they were able to do the many things they cannot do by law today. We’ve seen it with the dreamers. It has been proved. President Trump said he would revisit terminating the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program if Congress can’t pass a bill that supports the dreamers. The Dream Act is 16 years overdue, but so is a path to citizenship for the 11 million who have not qualified for DACA.
Comprehensive and smart immigration reform would allow undocumented immigrants opportunities to truly contribute to the U.S. economy and participate in the many things American citizens take for granted.
Kara Meyer, New York
The Sept. 7 editorial “The unjustified DACA decision” baldly asserted that the president and the attorney general offer “muddled reasoning” for the decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, but the justification for it was quite clear.
The Immigration and Nationality Act says that aliens who are in this country illegally (e.g., because they entered the United States without documentation or overstayed their temporary visas) are subject to deportation and prohibited from working in the United States. DACA bars deportation of some of these immigrants and permits them to work for two-year periods, renewable without limit. Even accepting the dubious assertion that prosecutorial discretion allows limitless deportation deferrals on a categorical rather than individual basis, there is no corresponding principle permitting limitless grants of work permits. DACA amounts to an amendment of an essential part of the act. This is made plain by its history; then-President Barack Obama issued the DACA order after Congress failed to agree to his proposed legislation amending the act to mitigate the consequences to which immigrants here illegally are subject. The Constitution, however, vests authority to amend legislation solely in Congress and not the president. DACA thus constitutes the sort of rule by decree normally practiced only by dictatorships.
Congress has similarly failed to agree to President Trump’s proposed legislation repealing and replacing Obamacare. What would the reaction be if Mr. Trump responded by issuing an executive order barring imposition of the individual and business mandates for unlimited renewable two-year periods?
Marshall Tamor Golding, Arlington
Mickey Kaus’s Sept. 13 op-ed, “Don’t buy all the PR about ‘dreamers’ ” admitted that “dreamers” are an appealing group of would-be citizens but worried about the slippery-slope theory of legislative possibilities. Apparently, Americans should be fearful of whole villages appearing in their neighborhoods, unless they are European, of course. Compromise on immigration or deport the dreamers appeared to be Mr. Kaus’s only recourse.
Steve Harrison, Adamstown, Md.
I call on President Trump and Congress not to end Temporary Protected Status [“‘How would I survive going back there?’,” Metro, Sept. 10]. TPS is a provision of federal immigration law that grants temporary clearance to work and shields from deportation thousands of immigrants from Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador. Any talk of ending TPS is rooted in the evil trinity of racism, classism and sexism against people of color from foreign nations. Immigrants from Europe and Canada do not face this double standard of immigration discrimination being pushed by the Trump administration. We must defend TPS — and defend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program simultaneously.
Arthur L. Mackey Jr., New York
Protesters show support for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals in Los Angeles on Sept. 10.