An Anonymous Letter From An Undocumented Parent
Unfortunately, we live in a country where the person who wrote this letter can not put his or her name to these words without fear of repercussion, but these words could easily come from many of the undocumented parents and family members I've met who would rather give youth a chance at legal status this year than no one at all.
I support the DREAM Act. I am an immigrant and a parent. I have lived in this country for almost 30 years. I will not personally benefit from the passage of the DREAM Act, and neither will my two American-born children. I support the DREAM Act because I believe strongly that it benefits our entire community. I use the term "community" in its fullest sense: our American community, our community of immigrants and the descendents of immigrants, our families and our friends. We all know that we will be enriched morally, economically, and socially by bringing young immigrants out of the shadows now and allowing them to fully participate in the American life that is already the only life they know.
I have been awed by the courage, passion, and principled leadership demonstrated by our young people as they advocate for the DREAM Act. I've heard their voices and been moved by their stories, and I know you have too. I have followed them online as they have walked thousands of miles to gather support and take their message directly to their elected representatives. I have prayed for their safety as they have "come out", "sat in", stood up for their beliefs, and been arrested. I have agonized as they have starved for their dream. I have celebrated as, against all odds, they have graduated from high school and college. I am so proud of them! They have earned my undying love, respect and admiration. I only ask that our community now stand up for them.
I know some people believe that passing the DREAM Act now will adversely impact CIR later. I respectfully disagree. I believe that passing DREAM now is simply the right thing to do. Many of these young people have been waiting almost their whole lives for this opportunity. Many of them have been working tirelessly to pass DREAM since they were in high school; some are now college graduates. Let's all advocate for the DREAM Act not as a substitute for comprehensive immigration reform, but as a down payment, a first installment. Imagine the power of a million kids, who are smart, well-organized, resourceful, and unencumbered by the threat of their own deportation. They have been, and will always be, there for us; we have an obligation to be there for them - for Laura, Lulu, Dulce, Jose, Mo, Uriel, Jesus, David, Diana, Richard, Sonia, Isabel, Myrna, Nico, Ireri, Edy, Tania, Rosario, Erika, Reyna, Antonia, Jose, and all the others. We can't continue to look these beautiful kids in the eye, and tell them "not now." They've done all the hard work to get the DREAM Act to the place it is now; they just need our blessing.Undocumented Parent (30 July 2010)