Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

    The Immigration Imperative

    All hail dictator Obama!

    The Cinch:
    President Barack Obama announced a ground-breaking deal that could allow approximately 5 million illegal immigrants to naturally integrate into American society without the fear of deportation.

    The Rundown:
    On Nov. 20, 2014, Obama made what I think is one of the best speeches of his presidency. In his speech, he gave a much overdue commentary on America’s broken immigration system and outlined a possible solution. The decision to introduce this reform has come uni-laterally, which quickly prompted conservatives everywhere to scream “dictator!” “tyrant!” and my personal favorite — “socialist!” In his speech, he outlined the following steps as part of America’s immigration policy reform:

    1. “Additional resources for our law enforcement personnel.”

    He didn’t elaborate on what exactly “additional resources” means but I’m sure it’s not a stretch to assume that means more equipment, more surveillance and possibly higher wages for border personnel.

    2. Creating an easier transition for “high-skilled immigrants, graduates and entrepreneurs to stay and contribute to our economy.”

    The speech was only fifteen minutes long, so naturally the president couldn’t elaborate on every detail, but I wish he would’ve elaborated more on this. How exactly will the transition be made easier for high-skilled immigrants? For that matter, what exactly constitutes a “high-skilled immigrant”? One thing is certain though: immigrants have systematically impacted the business world in terms of entrepreneurship. Over ten percent of the immigrant workforce owns a business compared to 9.3 percent of the U.S.-born workforce. An influx of entrepreneurs is good for the economy.

    3. “We’ll take steps to deal responsibly with the millions of undocumented immigrants who already live in our country.”

    The president took care to speak on this third issue more thoroughly. He spoke on the need to differentiate and be discriminate in our deportation of immigrants. “Felons, not families. Criminals, not children. Gang members, not a mom who’s working hard to provide for her kids.” Eloquently put by the president and strikingly appropriate. Our focus should be on deporting criminals, and according to Obama, deportation of criminals are up 80 percent.

    He went on to propose a “deal” that would allow individuals that meet one of the following criteria to remain in America without fear of deportation:

    •Have lived in America for more than five years.

    •Have children who are American citizens or are legal citizens.

    •Furthermore, immigrants must register, pass a criminal background check and must pay taxes.

    I think this proposed reform is incredibly important. Even if the proposition receives friction from the GOP (which it has), it will create a much-needed conversation on immigration reform. America is a country that was built on immigrants. Who are we to deny millions of immigrants the opportunity to become part of this great country? With that being said, I don’t think that it’s okay to enter this country illegally; however I’m not naïve enough to think that the 10 million undocumented citizens can all be rounded up and shipped back to their countries. Rather, I think that immigrants should be given the chance to work, create jobs and stimulate the economy.

    More to Discover