Thursday, March 6, 2014

Deporting the American DREAM

"Deporter-in-chief"? Really? How could that be?

Believe it or not, that was the topic for discussion on "Ralston Reports" last night. Immigrant civil rights advocates right and left (including Astrid Silva) slammed President Obama's astonishingly high number of deportations. And they reminded Ralston (& his audience) of what's happening at home as immigrants continue to be rounded up and hauled into Henderson Detention Center.

(The good stuff starts at 20:00. The video counts time backward.)

Even today, immigrants with no actual criminal record are being rounded up as "criminals" and thrown in jail simply because of their immigration status. And however one feels about President Obama's record number of deportations, one can't deny that President Obama is indeed enforcing current immigration law.

So why on earth did Rep. Joe Heck (R-Henderson) accuse President Obama of failure to enforce current immigration law at his Henderson town hall meeting last month? He claimed his vote last June to deport DREAMers was due to the "lawlessness" of the Obama Administration. Earth to Rep. Heck: Presidents can legally use discretion when making decisions on deportations. Yet even as President Obama has exercised his authority to use discretion, he has nonetheless proceeded with many other deportations.

And that's the sad reality of the present situation. While DACA has given many DREAMers a sorely needed reprieve from constant fear of being torn away from everything & everyone they know, it's not a long-term solution. Really, only one thing is: comprehensive immigration reform (CIR). The longer Rep. Heck & other House Republicans twiddle their thumbs and deflect blame onto others while failing to pass CIR, the more painful this problem becomes.

No matter how often Rep. Heck & other G-O-TEA politicians try to deny it, it's their choice to block reform. And so long as reform is blocked, the President is forced to make hard decisions on how to enforce current law... And millions of American families will remain at risk of forever losing their American dream.

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