English Comp II
November 5, 2014
Foreign-Born Citizens in America’s Population As of 2013, 27% of America’s populations are foreign-born citizens. Moreover, Mexico has the highest number of foreign-born citizens coming in at 9.6 million. Each year America receives 175,900 immigrants from Mexico. As of the 2000s, these statistics has become a big controversy in the USA. Some of these immigrants are illegal, but have had children while living here in America. People in the U.S. question whether or not children of illegal immigrants should have the same rights as children of legal U.S. citizens. The fight is slowly brewing. Even though there are many controversial issues centered on this topic, the most important is “Should children of illegal aliens go to college and gain legal status? “ Each year about 65,000 undocumented students graduate from high school in the United States. Congress has a bill pending called “Dream Act,” (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act). The DREAM Act will provide conditional legal immigration status that will help students obtain legal citizenship and have a chance to enter college. However, there are certain qualifications individuals have to meet in order to gain these opportunities. Two of the qualifications are: Having been brought to the United States before the age of 16, and living in the United States for at least 5 years. In “What Rights Do Illegal Immigrants have, 2010”, David Bennion, an immigration attorney at Nationalities Service Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, states his arguments on why he agrees with the Dream Act: “Dreamers are honor students and athletes. They are aspiring schoolteachers, scientist, scholars, lawyers, doctors and social workers” (2). These undocumented students are people whom Americans as a whole will need every day in the future. Therefore, the DREAM Act should be passed and these children should get a chance to make their non-believers into believers. In order for that to happen, they first need citizenship and a college education. “In my experience, they are talented, incredibly engaged and deeply committed to the American nation and their local communities. Many do not speak the language of their home countries” (2). Bennion sincerely and respects these undocumented children with dreams: “They cannot imagine leaving a country they grew up in, their high school friends, their teachers, coaches and ministers. Some of them were brought over as infants and toddlers and cannot imagine living anywhere else” (2). Because, he lets these citizens have become Americanized, why not give them official papers so they can comfortably call American their home. Even though there are those who support the DREAM Act, there are still some people who believe this act should not be passed. In, “What Rights Should Illegal Immigrants Have,” Yet Ling-Ling, an executive director of the Diversity Alliance for a Sustainable America and an immigrant herself has a say-so on this concept: “Passing the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act, or DREAM Act, is bad idea. Allowing illegal immigrant students to pay in state college tuition and gain residency would only encourage more illegal immigrants in the United States (1). Ling-Ling feels that if the U.S. hands out these free citizenships and reduce college educations, that immigration percentage will triple her in the USA. She goes on to express her belief that the DREAM Act would have a negative effect on American citizens and their society, causing an impact economically and politically.
Already, American’s own citizens are struggling financially with paying college tuition, so why should illegal immigrants be able to pay less for college? In, “What Rights Should Illegal Immigrants Have,” Yet Ling-Ling mentions, “Many Americans cannot…