Young DACA adults are desirable candidates for citizenship

Published Sep 12, 2017 at 4:00pm

The lead editorial in Thursday’s paper (9/7/2017) is too one-sided for us to ignore. Anyone can find strongly biased blogs that can add up to the screed that was presented.  It is a “Red Herring” that casts a very critical light on a program that, in our opinion, was the fair and humane thing to do.

DACA, an acronym for “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival,” was created in 2012 to protect those innocent children who were brought here, albeit illegally, by their parents. They were the passive “victims” of their parents’ actions.

In our minds they are not criminals. They are victims who each have never known anything but an American life. It is totally unfair to lump DACA enrollees in with all other children that have been brought to the USA. The DACA enrollees have been thoroughly vetted to eliminate probable future criminals, malcontents, future drains on public welfare, etc. This vetting assures that they will be well-educated contributors to our economic system and positive members of our society.

The 2012 Presidential action required that the applicants had to be younger than 31 years old when the program began. They also had to prove that they had lived in the United States continuously since June 15, 2007, and that they had arrived in the U.S. before the age of 16. They also had to show that they have clean criminal records. They had to be enrolled in high school or college, or be serving in our military.

We disagree with many of the editorial’s points:

1). The original memo setting up DACA shouldn’t be labeled as “unconstitutional” until a court declares it so.

2). The DACA enrollees did not break the law when they immigrated, their parents did.

3). To declare that these people were “likely to become a public charge” is as spurious a charge as we can imagine, because:

4.) Virtually 100 percent of the adults have become tax-paying workers who are helping with our economy in productive jobs. Each of them is helping to pay for the “Welfare Recipients” and the “Federal Employees” that were mentioned in the editorial.

Many natural-born American citizens would not do as well as the DACA enrollees have done if they had been under similar scrutiny from school age to young adults. These young DACA adults should be regarded as the most desirable candidates for citizenship.

Yes, our immigration laws, as many others of our laws, might need improving. We hope that Congress has the fairness, sense of humanity, and good judgment not to deport the DACA enrollees to countries that are completely foreign to them. They have grown up here and are as American in heart and spirit as you and we are.  The loss of their energy, intelligence, and productivity could only hurt us.

— David N. Kobernuss and Betty M. Kobernuss, Taberg