The DREAM Act was timely to enable selected group of students, military personnel and other forms of illegal immigrants to enjoy being in their country of choice, and this would essentially help stimulate the economy of the country.
Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act is legislation in America that was introduced on 1st August 2001 in Senate and later reintroduced on 11th May 2011. However, the bill faced quite a number of challenges and oppositions from the Republicans (Vedantam 1).
However, this could not deter the progression that was intended in protecting those who were viewed as aliens in the country. Some critics were skeptical on the need of instituting such a law. Reducing unemployment among the youths should have been the first priority than instituting a law for immigrants (Allan of Letters: 1).
On the other hand, there are those who viewed the proposal as a way allowing illegal immigrants in the country. They also argue that this is apparently a deliberate move by Obama to have as many immigrants as possible in the country.
The notion behind providing some permanency for immigrants was a question that most of the Republicans were trying to think about, and especially the motive behind such a move. In cases where immigrants are in the country for other purposes such as studies or working in the military, it is imperative to note that they still have their respective countries of origin which should essentially harbor them.
Nonetheless, those who support the bill, especially among the democrats argue that every American resident or other alien should be given express rights to be in the country regardless of their countries of origins (Allan of Obama’s Christmas list rewards illegals: 2). The Democrats have a feeling that each American resident or visitor should be equally recognized.
If some immigrants are working in the military force, it means that they are contributing a lot towards homeland security. In addition, there are some people who are running businesses in the country. This implies that they are in one way or another contributing towards improvement of the country’s economy. The following are some of the benefits that can be accrued from the DREAM Act.
Benefits to the USA army force
The Army force in United States of America has all kinds of people including immigrants from various countries in the world. According to Chavez (199), a person who has consistently served in the country’s army for more than two years should be given due consideration before being dismissed as mere immigrant who should go back to mother country. The reason advanced towards this argument is that such an individual will have immensely contributed in homeland security to the benefit of all citizens.
The army is considered to be one of the supreme agencies in the country, and so are the people in the institution. Isenberg (29) is categorical that protecting all people in the military force is ensuring that the country is stable, and hence the high need of implementing the provisions of DEAM Act. Hundreds of members of the US army are comprised of immigrants.
If this Act was to be opposed fully, it would have meant that the work as illegal. However, since the Act was enacted, the Army has already instituted various measures of ensuring that everybody in the force has equal roles with total disregard of where a person has come from, or their illegality.
Benefits in education
The DREAM Act has a more direct focus in giving legitimacy to thousands of students in colleges and universities who come from other countries for purposes of study.
According to Morales, Herrera and Murry (266-283), most of the immigrants are registered as students or had come to the United States of America for the sole purpose of furthering their education.
It is heinous to deny these students their rights to have legitimacy in the country as far as their course is known. Education is vital because it gives a person some powers to partake in development of the economy.
Therefore, instituting such a law requiring all agencies to recognize the rights of immigrants would not only help in building the capacity of education in the country, but also build the economy. There are some groups which have already started recognition of immigrants after the laws are; US conference of mayors, the National PTA, Catholic conference of bishops and a number of colleges and universities.
Benefits to the economy
The economy stands to benefit a lot when legislation gains recognition. When immigrants pay visit to the United States, they come for specific purposes such as education and employment. Therefore, anyone who is employed in the country would be putting back the gains into the American economy. In this regard, denying immigrants a chance to be recognized can hurt the economy a great deal.
According to Ortellado (1), some legal immigrants have questioned the concept of building the economy by instituting such a law. A survey report on this act noted that most legal immigrants felt that the Act would be a bad thing to America in the near future (Ortellado, 3).
All in all, the prospects of this law are bright because at least there would be added advantages to building of economy. If legal immigrants are to be the only immigrants plus the Native Americans to be allowed to partake in building the economy, the levels of growth anticipated would not be met.
Prevention of abuse
There are myriad of abuses that may possibly prevail in a country like United States of America. For instance, it has been historically documented that racism has had negative impacts to the minority races such as black Americans who have suffered numerous assaults and lack of recognition in the country.
However, there are equally many changes that have been instituted that have made these people be recognized. For example, during the mid-21st century, leading nationalists and personalities like Martin Luther King (jnr.) were assaulted for masterminding demonstrations against racial segregations.
The same way such issues have become history, the same way the abuse would prevent a number of abuses remaining on immigrants. According to Romesburg (9), there are a number of innovations that have happened dating as back as 1896. However, the 2001 DREAM Act would have brought in good changes in the way the immigrants are viewed in a country like America. For example, the abuses against a section of immigrants by a group like KKK would stop.
A voice for minors
This law was drafted in a manner that it could act as the voice for the minors. Olivas (43) is categorical that it was one of the Acts that were expected to give a reason for celebration among people who had been segregated for a relatively long period of time. Among groups that have been sidelined for sometime include the impaired persons as well as illegal Immigrants.
Since the immigrants are active participants in the country especially in building the economy, giving them a voice means continued participation. Therefore, the politics that were put in this law were unwarranted and were just directed at denying people their right to participate in economic building.
Negative attributes of DREAM Act
Most immigrants tend to view themselves as inferior even when they have equal rights similar to other residents. According to Mayorga (41), the opposition that was growing during the congressional debates regarding this Act was based on some forms of camouflaging.
It was viewed that some immigrants who in the first place are illegal and are well off may come to the country for t purposes of getting favors as stipulated in the Act. That is why the republicans viewed the Act as being fronted by the immigrants and especially those who already have high status in the country.
Can be precursor to racial conflicts
There are myriad of laws that have been enacted and were positively aimed at empowering non American natives in spite of the fact that they are not original inhabitants. Some of these empowerments have especially targeted racial segregations and how to end them.
Putting another law with an intention of giving illegal immigrants may cause some tensions amongst various groups in the country. Even the legal immigrants or those people who have already obtained work permits and citizenship were against such kind of law. Generally, it may be precursor to renewal of racial conflicts.
Allan, Gomez. Letters: Focus on jobless citizens, not illegal immigrants. 23 Oct 2011. Web. 2 Dec. 2011.
Allan, Gomez. Obama’s Christmas list rewards illegals. 1 Dec. 2011. 3 Dec. 2011. Web http://content.usatoday.com/topics/article/DREAM+Act/00iJ7SV4p4g6J/1 (Online source)
Chavez, Leo. The Latino threat: Constructing immigrants, citizens, and the nation. California: Stanford University Press, 2008. Print. (Book).
Isenberg, David. Shadow force: Private security contractors in Iraq. Westport: ABC-CLIO, 2009. Print. (Book).
Mayorga, Edwin. Camouflaged. New York: Lulu publishers, 2008. Print.
Morales, Amanda, Herrera, Socorro & Murry, Kevin. “Navigating the waves of social and political capriciousness: Inspiring perspectives from DREAM-Eligible Immigrant Student.” Journal of Hispanic Higher Education, 10.3(2009): 266-283. Print. (Book).
Olivas, Michael. The political economy of the Dream Act and the Legislative process: A case study of comprehensive immigration reform. 17 Feb. 2010. Web. 2 Dec. 2011.
Ortellado, Damian. DREAM Act could cost more than previously estimated, according to report. 2 Dec. 2011. Web. 2 Dec. 2011
Romesburg, Don. “Innovation through the ages”. The Advocate Magazine, 14 Aug. 2001. Web. 2 Dec. 2011.
Vedantam, Shankar. “Passing of DREAM Act is very unlikely in next Congress, Republicans say.” The Washington Post, 23 Dec., 2010. Web. 2 Dec. 2011