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'Why don't they just become a citizen?'
Author: Raine    Date: 09/06/2017 13:01:26

This is a question I am seeing floated around a lot when discussing The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, also known as #DACA.
The DREAM Act, which would have provided a pathway to permanent residency for unauthorized immigrants brought to the United States upon meeting certain qualifications, was considered by Congress in 2007. It failed to overcome a bipartisan filibuster in the Senate. It was considered again in 2011. The bill passed the House, but did not get the 60 votes needed to overcome a Republican filibuster in the Senate. In 2013, legislation that would have comprehensively reformed the immigration system, including allowing dreamers permission to stay in the country, work and attend school, passed the Senate but did not pass in the House.

The New York Times credits the failure of Congress to protect dreamers as the driver behind Obama's decision to sign DACA.


Short answer: they can't.
 

“Depending on how close that family member is, it can take anywhere from a year to a year and half on the fast track, to upwards of 25 years on the slowest end,” Keller said.

All three ways have numerical limitations. For example, the U.S. Department of State says only 25,620 people are legally allowed to immigrate from Mexico to the U.S. each year, but there are 1.3 million Mexicans on the wait list. (snip)

“Depending on how close that family member is, it can take anywhere from a year to a year and half on the fast track, to upwards of 25 years on the slowest end,” Keller said.

All three ways have numerical limitations. For example, the U.S. Department of State says only 25,620 people are legally allowed to immigrate from Mexico to the U.S. each year, but there are 1.3 million Mexicans on the wait list. (snip)

Almost all Dreamers do not have a close family member who is U.S. citizen or who has permanent legal status, making it almost impossible to obtain a green card.

“A lot of people have this misunderstanding that Dreamers were given citizenship or they’re shirking their responsibilities by not becoming citizens,” Keller said. “They can’t do it. You have to follow the existing law.”

In some rare cases, an American spouse can sponsor a Dreamer’s application for a green card, but the applicant would still have leave the U.S. for a period of time.


1.3 million people are on a waiting list, and it appears that this number doesn't include the DREAMers. They don't have green cards. Take a look at this post from a few years ago
“No, ma’am,” I said. “There’s no process for me.” Of all the questions I’ve been asked in the past year, “Why don’t you become legal?” is probably the most exasperating. But it speaks to how unfamiliar most Americans are with how the immigration process works.

As Angela M. Kelley, an immigration advocate in Washington, told me, “If you think the American tax code is outdated and complicated, try understanding America’s immigration code.” The easiest way to become a U.S. citizen is to be born here—doesn’t matter who your parents are; you’re in. (The main exception is for children of foreign diplomatic officials.) If you were born outside the U.S. and want to come here, the golden ticket is the so-called green card, a document signifying that the U.S. government has granted you permanent-resident status, meaning you’re able to live and, more important, work here. Once you have a green card, you’re on your way to eventual citizenship—­in as little as three years if you marry a U.S. citizen—as long as you don’t break the law and you meet other requirements such as paying a fee and passing a civics test.


This administration deciding to end the #DACA program, is at best, cruel and uninformed. I personally find it sadistic and racist. These people are here, this is their country and they deserve to be treated as such. We are veering off into a dangerous place where if a person is not of the proper ethnicity or religion they are not welcome into this nation. Until last November that was not an American value -- at least, that is what we told ourselves. I don't think we can say that anymore and still be honest with ourselves.

We are a nation of immigrants and descendants of them. We are turning our backs on everything this country was built on. That is horrifying. It is time for this horror to end. In the mean time, remind everyone of this:

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/90/85/64/90856497b082a2b456f3a30efdd4d4f4--statue-of-liberty-moving-pictures.jpg


President Barack Obama weighed in on this yesterday.
Immigration can be a controversial topic. We all want safe, secure borders and a dynamic economy, and people of goodwill can have legitimate disagreements about how to fix our immigration system so that everybody plays by the rules.

But that's not what the action that the White House took today is about. This is about young people who grew up in America -- kids who study in our schools, young adults who are starting careers, patriots who pledge allegiance to our flag. These Dreamers are Americans in their hearts, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper. They were brought to this country by their parents, sometimes even as infants. They may not know a country besides ours. They may not even know a language besides English. They often have no idea they're undocumented until they apply for a job, or college, or a driver's license. (snip)

What makes us American is not a question of what we look like, or where our names come from, or the way we pray. What makes us American is our fidelity to a set of ideals -- that all of us are created equal; that all of us deserve the chance to make of our lives what we will; that all of us share an obligation to stand up, speak out, and secure our most cherished values for the next generation. That's how America has traveled this far. That's how, if we keep at it, we will ultimately reach that more perfect union.


and

Raine





 
 

32 comments (Latest Comment: 09/06/2017 19:01:19 by livingonli)
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