After Senate's DREAM Act failure, Obama must step up to the plate
President Obama Must Take Immediate Steps to Protect
the Rights of Immigrant Youth
Yes, I'm disappointed by the Senate’s failure to advance the DREAM Act. Congresspeople who voted against the DREAM Act betrayed our country’s core values of equality and human rights for children. They also squandered the energy and talent of thousands of youth who were raised in the US, have become leaders in their communities, and who want to commit their best to our nation. The Obama administration must not abandon these youth and their families.
The movement that brought the DREAM Act to this momentous vote was led by thousands of immigrant youth who worked unflaggingly in the service of our American values of justice and human rights. Their efforts inspired both the nation and the entire immigrant rights movement, a group which has faced increasing hostility as a result of the Obama administration’s harsh enforcement and detention policies. They deserve our gratitude, these young men and women, as does Illinois Senator Richard Durbin, who has fought for years to pass the DREAM Act.
However, the Obama administration must step up to the plate now. It must use its administrative authority immediately to ensure that all immigrant youth are able to continue to contribute to our communities and live safely in the United States. Obama must enact humane policies and end unjust enforcement programs that are tearing apart immigrant families and resulting in unnecessary and inhumane detention of thousands. Yes, I'm calling for a complete reversal of his policies. It is hard to believe that any president could be worse than George W. Bush, but Obama's policies on immigration actually have been.
I know that DREAM Act will one day prevail. We suffered a major setback last weekend, but I have no doubt that its time will arrive.
Until it does, I insist that Obama do what he can to salvage a bad situation. I'm waiting for a change I can believe in.