Abortion: 14-15 pages
Taylor Makowski [TM1]
RWS 305W T 4pm
1 October 2013
The Dream Act: A Bright Future or Means to End?
Introduction to Characters
Marco Valdez (con): Was born in Mexico, concerned for the safety of their only son, Marco’s parents began the process of attaining United States Citizenship. At the age of 11 the Valdez family moved to San Diego as legal US citizens. Honesty and safety are highly valued. Marco attended college and decided to pursue a career as a California Boarder Patrol Officer. He is also an advocate for human rights. (support military?)
Eddie Howard (con): Is a tax professional (Audit), He strongly believes in the rule of law and that illegal immigrants should not be allowed to utilize any programs, including education, meant for legal US citizens. Illegal immigrants harm society and lack respect towards the American public. However, Eddie is simultaneously critical of the government who continues to supply immigrants with benefits (such as the Dream Act), despite their illegal status, as well as Americans in general
Michael Kooli (pro): Is an economist. He believes allowing people to fulfill their dreams will have a positive effect on the economy and that in general illegal immigration does not actually harm our society. Anyone wishing to immigrate should be able to do so, in a timely manner, Earth belongs to humanity. Michael’s parents immigrated from Europe to escape oppression.
Luis Benito (pro): Is attending a prestigious college, as a political science major, he supports the idea of immigration reform noting that immigration should serve the American public (it currently does not). He is a strong advocate for education and believes allowing the dream act to pass will allow immigrants to reach their dreams, and create skilled workers that otherwise would have been left to the same fate as their parents.
Elena Johnson: News broadcaster, for PBS news
Elena Johnson: Good morning. The controversial Dream Act has sparked intense discussion on whether or not we as a country owe illegal immigrants a path to citizenship. Today we have with us four gentlemen ready to debate the effectiveness of the program for our country. Why don’t we start with Luis Benito. Can you briefly explain what this law actually is?
Luis Benito: Thank you for having me here today, Elena. Let me begin with this statement: the immigration system currently in place in the United States is deeply flawed. That being said, the Dream Act is a step in the right direction. Current legislation would allow children who entered the Unites States prior to age 16, who have lived here for at least five years and are under the age of 30, as of June 15, 2012, to pursue a higher education or enlist in the military (Nancy Pelosi). Those that initially qualify and then complete at least [TM2]two years of service or two years of college would then be offered a path to citizenship. The act would only apply to a specific set of individuals and contain various expiration dates (where did I find this??).
Michael Kooli: Adding on to this, many people may not be aware that the Dream Act has not actually been passed yet, those who support this bill must continue to rally for its passage. Although many states have passed their own versions of the [TM3]dream act regarding higher education for undocumented immigrants, they cannot and do not provide pathways to citizenship.
Eddie Howard: Thank goodness for that! [TM4]These illegal aliens don’t need any more incentives to bombard our country and deplete our recourses. I believe in the importance of upholding the law. Illegal means illegal. Why should we be responsible for people who are not allowed in this country much less their illegal children?
Michael Kooli: Well, for one, because these individuals have spent their entire lives [TM5]in this country and know no other home. These young people “pledge allegiance to our flag,” they are “talented” and “driven” and “for all intensive purposes they are Americans” (Obama).
Marco Valdez: Yes, but do illegal immigrants and their children deserve to have citizenship. I think this requires a deeper look at the United States government and government in general. I know firsthand what immigration, legal immigration, is [TM6]like. My family followed every single law required of us, I went to college and I became a productive member of society. And we did it without ever trying to evade the laws of the country my parents hoped would cultivate our dreams.
Eddie Howard: Turning a blind eye to those who blatantly disrespect the laws of this country will lead to widespread anarchy. Any alien who wants to can get inside the boarders without bothering with the legal system we have in place. They can abuse our system, and can access virtually every necessity required to thrive here, without any repercussions. So why should any immigrant bother with the law? Society should beware, conformity is a very real phenomenon and one group of people setting a bad example could lead our country to place no one wants to bear witness too. (Asch exp. Too much?)
Luis Benito: Lets get real, there are roughly [TM7]11.5 undocumented immigrants in the United States of America. (Look up- Department of Homeland Security Office of Immigration Statistics) of these an estimated 1.4 million children could benefit from the passage of the Dream Act. Only those children who continue to pursue their education (or military service) would be authorized to stay in the US with conditional temporary residence. Of these individuals only those who complete the requirements will be granted permanent residency and only then can the dreamers apply for citizenship. (CITE) This process is long and expensive.
Michael Kooli: Yes, illegal immigration is a problem. Should it be rewarded? Probably not. However, this is a country that was built on immigration (Obama-CBS), and the children of illegal immigrants should not be punished for something they did not do. Their parents work hard in unskilled labor positions and the children, whom this act targets, are talented young people with dreams of having professional careers.
Luis Benito: I agree Michael, it would be in Americas best interest to provide education for illegal immigrants. Doing so would encourage more immigrants to complete their high school educations and even to strive for a college education. [TM8]A large amount of money is often spent on educating undocumented children and the US never sees a return from their education because there are very limited job options for such a person. (Americas Voice- add more stats). Allowing these kids to attend college gives them the opportunity to learn new skills, become more productive members of society, attain citizenship, and essentially become less of a drain on society.
Marco Valdez: It does not matter that the Dream Act is targeted and selective, the creation of it at all continues to send a message to all immigrants that it is ok to evade the laws of this country. Additionally, our country’s history of tolerance entices this group of aliens to get over the boarder quickly and illegally, because someday Americans will offer amnesty again. Presidents from both parties have habitually handed out deferred action to illegal aliens facing deportation, allowing them to stay and work legally in the U.S. The start of World War II created a labor shortage in the U.S. President Roosevelt then created the bracero program, which brought roughly 400,000 agricultural workers per year from 1942 to 1964 to work in the states. In the 1970’s roughly 1 million illegal aliens lived here. In 1986 a law was passed giving amnesty to anyone who arrived illegally in the US before 1982. This gave almost 3 million aliens legal permanent residency and of those, 1.1 million received citizenship. Today the number of illegal residents is above 11 million; this is[TM9] proof that amnesty does not work (ABC News). It has only made our problems worse, despite the fact that the government assured us, in 1986, that boarder security would be tightened. Again, they are promising tightened boarder security and only a selective pathway to citizenship for only certain children, however it is essentially “backdoor amnesty”(Seattle Times) all over again.
Michael Kooli: Allowing 3 Million illegal immigrants, Marco, to attain legal permanent residency had a great impact on our country, yes, but a positive one. It allowed 3 million individuals to come out of the dark (CITE), remove themselves from situations of abuse and strive for better jobs. Authorizing them to work increased tax revenue and purchasing power of the United States (ABC). On the other hand, assuming that 700,000 of the 1.4 eligible dreamers who would have attained permanent residency status, were deported it would actually cost 16.2 billion dollars versus an estimated 1.4-3.6 trillion dollars that they could generate. (Dream Act by Numbers)
Luis Benito: Not to mention, the millions (CBO fiscal impact) of dollars we have already spent on educating these children, which would be [TM10]completely wasted should dreamers not be allowed to pursue higher education or be deported.
Marco Valdez: Education is a personal benefit, there is no guarantee that any of these
kids will be of service to our country nor that any of them will actually generate
significant sources of income. We cannot depend on [TM11]hypothetical statistics of their hypothetical benefits to society. We need guarantees that the students will benefit their communities, not become dependent on benefits meant for American citizens and that this act will not encourage increased illegal immigration. This would be hard to accomplish, given the huge increase in illegal aliens that has already been historically demonstrated by the number of immigrants the country illegally before and after the implementation of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act.
Luis Benito:(weak)Not dealing with the large number of school aged undocumented immigrant youth will keep in place an unending trend of individuals with limited high school educations. Since they currently cannot attend college (federally?) there are [TM12]few options for them, but to follow in their parents’ footsteps even though America is the only home they know. The next generation of American born citizen children of illegal immigrants (brought over as kids) will then also become impacted (theoretically causing deficits in children for generations yet to come, cost for society could be much more detrimental than letting bright young kids attend college and receive citizenship). It has been shown that illegal status of parents negatively affects both undocumented and citizen children (Urban Institute). Immigration will continue to be a negative concept in the minds of Americans, but the cycle can be broken if those that have to aptitude for success are allowed to attempt to achieve it.
Eddie Howard: Something everyone has neglected to acknowledge thus far, is that this bill does not actually limit attaining citizenship to children, those up to 30 years of age may apply so long as they meet the afore mentioned requirements. It is misleading to market this bill to Americans as one that affects only children, because adults will be benefiting from it as well.
Luis Benito: Yes, however, it is imperative to note that versions of the Dream Act have been written and re-written for over ten years. It would be unfair to deny those who began the initial effort to create and advance the bill their own paths to citizenship (Immigration Policy Center)
Eddie Howard: Aliens perpetuate a cycle of abuse that is unhealthy for the United States to continue fostering (by supporting legislation such as the Dream Act). While Michael makes a point that employers and other members of the public may abuse the “rights” of immigrants that they don’t actually have because they are not citizens, illegal aliens abuse the system themselves. Not only do they not have to pay taxes (federal taxes-check accuracy of this statement-EITC) the United States government paid illegal immigrants 4.2 billion dollars in refundable tax credits meant for citizens(Treasury IG- add year and do more research).
Michael Kooli: Actually Eddie, illegal immigrants pay taxes in many forms including income tax, property tax, sales tax amounting to an estimated 11.2 billion dollars in state and local taxes in 2010 (*Immigration Policy Center). These illegal immigrants “add value to the US economy: not only as taxpayers, but as workers, consumers and entrepreneurs as well” (IPC*)
Marco Valdez: I think we are losing the main point of this argument. Supporting a bill like the Dream Act, reinforces that illegal immigration is ok. This issue will continue to grow until action is taken against the problem. We do not want to reward individuals for breaking the laws, while honorable immigrants wait years in their home country to be allowed into the United States legally. Additionally, it is a safety hazard for all individuals living in the United States to have such large numbers of undocumented
immigrants in the country. Should anything like the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 occur, or heaven forbid even a natural disaster, we need to know who every single person inside our borders is.
Michael Kooli: Possible Debate on open boarders[TM13]
Eddie Howard: Oh, jeez, this country is as corrupt as the immigrants are delinquent. How is it that the IRS cannot take action against illegal aliens stealing everything they can from us? Or that they can even file taxes in the first place? As a matter of fact illegal aliens can legally drive cars (with a license), attend our public schools and universities and even use emergency medical services (CITE). Something needs to be changed, because this is not a functioning system. The only thing they don’t have is permission to work. Their presence is sanctioned though, by the federal government allowing these other services to even exist to them. What kind of message is this sending? Come and take advantage of our country: you can steal our money our services our jobs and while your at it we will provide your children’s educations free of charge! (Back to discussion on legality, see teacher note)
Possible Discussion on the US Labor (domestic vs ill and unskilled vs skilled)
Elena Johnson: Well America, how would you vote?
“5 Reasons to Support the Dream Act.” America’s Voice. America’s Voice, 15 Sept. 2010. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://americasvoiceonline.org/research/reasons_to_support_the_dream_act/>.
Capps, Randolph, Michael E. Fix, Jason Ost, Jane Reardon-Anderson, and Jeffery S. Pastel. “The Health and Well-Being of Young Children of Immigrants.” Urban Institute. N.p., 8 Feb. 2005. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://www.urban.org/publications/311139.html>.
The Center for American Progress Immigration Team. “6 Things You Need to Know About Deferred Action and DREAM Act Students.” Center for American Progress. N.p., 15 June 2012. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/news/2012/06/15/11694/6- things-you-need-to-know-about-deferred-action-and-dream-act-students/>.
“Dispelling DREAM Act Myths.” Immigration Policy Center. American Immigration Council, 23 Nov. 2010. Web. 30 Sept. 2013. <http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/dispelling-dream-act-myths>.
“The Dream Act.” Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. N.p., 8 Dec. 2010. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://www.democraticleader.gov/floor/dream-act>.
Fitz, Marshall, and Ann Garcia. “The DREAM Act by the Numbers.” Center for American Progress. N.p., 17 Dec. 2010. Web. 28 Sept. 2013. <http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/news/2010/12/17/8845/the -dream-act-by-the-numbers/>.
“The Impact of Unauthorized Immigrants on the Budgets of State and Local Governments.” Congressional Budget Office. Congress of the United States, Dec. 2007. Web. 29 Sept. 2012. <http://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/ftpdocs/87xx/doc8711/12-6- immigration.pdf>.
Madison, Lucy. “Obama Pushes DREAM Act, but Says He Needs Congress to Do It.” CBSNews. CBS Interactive, 28 Sept. 2011. Web. 30 Sept. 2013. <http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20112935-503544.html>.
Rojas, Ingrid. “The 1986 Immigration Reform Explained.” ABC News. ABC News Network, 15 May 2013. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://abcnews.go.com/ABC_Univision/Politics/1986- amnesty/story?id=18971179>.
“Unauthorized Immigrants Pay Taxes, Too.” Immigration Policy Center. American Immigration Council, 18 Apr. 2011. Web. 30 Sept. 2013. <http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/unauthorized-immigrants-pay- taxes-too>.
“Up to 1.4 Million Unauthorized Immigrants Could Benefit from New Deportation Policy.” Pew Hispanic Center. Pew Research, 15 June 2012. Web. 29 Sept. 2013. <http://www.pewhispanic.org/2012/06/15/up-to-1-4-million-unauthorized- immigrants-could-benefit-from-new-deportation