Every year, thousands of people from all around the world come into the United States, legally and illegally. All these people have different motivations for migrating. The majority of them come to follow the “American Dream”, the belief that anyone, regardless of where they were born or what class they were born into, can attain their own version of success in a society where upward mobility is possible for everyone. That was the motivation for the parents of thousands of DACA recipients. DACA stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.
This policy allowed individuals who had illegally entered the country as children, the temporary right to live, study and legally work in the United States. DACA has enabled young people to pursue their passions and dreams and to be able to develop talents and skills without the fear of being deported – allowing them to become contributors to our society. But the fact that these DACA beneficiaries contribute to society by paying taxes (among other things) is not enough for President Donald Trump. The Trump administration announced in September 2017, its plans to phase out DACA with a six-month delay for recipients. The decision to phase out DACA effectively disrupts the futures of nearly 800,000 people who have called the United States home since childhood. Dreamers (DACA beneficiaries) represent the only generation of immigrants in US history to be able to grow up alongside US citizens often believing as children that they would have all the same opportunities as US citizens did, then learning, as they grew up, that that was not true. These Dreamers learned too late that they would not be able to pursue their dream like other Americans. But with DACA, they were given the hope that they would be able to pursue their dreams.
Many of these beneficiaries are students, workers and homeowners. Research shows that the life of people who benefit from DACA has improved as well as the economy, which benefits all Americans. The data collected from a national survey that analyzed the economic, employment, societal and educational experiences of DACA recipients illustrated that DACA recipients generally earn higher wages, which translates to higher tax revenue and economic growth that benefits anyone living in the United States. Also, large purchases that are made help state revenue. The data also shows that 91% of DACA recipients are currently employed, in school or serving in the military .
Before DACA, 55.9% of people had not been employed. Currently, 72% of the 45% percent of people who are enrolled in school are reportedly pursuing a bachelor’s degree or higher.
There is a higher chance that the people who are pursuing higher education could make important discoveries that could earn the US billions of dollars. DACA has been good for the United States economy. Previous research has shown that DACA beneficiaries will contribute $460.3 billion to the US GDP over the next decade. This economic growth would be completely lost if DACA was to be eliminated. Also, in the fiscal year of 2016, 369 DACA recipients had enlisted in the Army. The fact that these Dreamers enlisted in the military is big. They are fighting to protect a country that does not even want them to live there and succeed just because they were not born on American soil although they have lived there for most of their lives and call that country home.
Although there are many benefits to DACA, there are also any disadvantages. Some people have no respect for US laws, citizens and culture. Although DACA is only given to people with no criminal record, some DACA recipients are committing crimes.
In the last month, there has been 3 separate incidents of DACA beneficiaries being arrested on human smuggling charges. These people are assisting more people to illegally enter the country Also, many beneficiaries are not registering for the draft. Men age 18-25 are required to register. Failure to register is considered a felony. If there are not many people who are registered for the draft, when there is an emergency for the United States, there will not be enough people to fight.
Although there are many reasons to be against DACA, I believe that DACA is beneficial as there are more jobs created to fit the demand. A letter circulated among tech companies by Zuckerberg-backed FWD.us said, “With them Dreamers, we grow and create jobs. They are part of why we will continue to have a global competitive advantage.” I believe that the benefits of DACA outweigh the disadvantages and that Dreamers should have a pathway to citizenship if they are obeying all the laws of the United States.