In 2012, former President Barack Obama made a historic decision when he signed the Deferred Action of Childhood Arrivals (DACA) executive action. When this action took effect, many children who were brought into this country illegally (also likely without any choice,) were given the ability to come out of the shadows and become integrated into American society. This was a huge change in the lives of these children, some who were not even old enough to understand immigration or their own immigration status. President Donald Trump and many supporters argue that illegal immigrants bring crime, and hurt the native-born Americans by taking jobs that could be given to them. Trump has given Congress six months to pass legislation that would protect “Dreamers” (nickname of DACA recipients). He argues that Congress should be the ones to pass DACA, which has broad bipartisan support. This becomes complicated when factoring in how deeply divided congress currently is, and how bills to protect “dreamers” have failed to pass congress multiple times, due to such differing views. According to the Huffington Post, immigrants added an estimated $2 trillion dollars into the United States GDP. The removal of these people from the US economy would likely hurt the United States GDP going forward. Another common misconception is that illegal immigrants do not pay taxes. This misconception undermines the fact that illegal immigrates are given a tax identification and because of their immigration status, they do not get any money back from the government.
Repealing DACA could hurt the United States economy, but more importantly it could irreversibly tear families apart. According to the Huffington Post, most “dreamers” brought into the country were under the age of seven, this likely means that they have little to no memory of the country that they could be forced back to. Sessions, in announcing the repeal of the bill calls DADA recipients “mostly adult” which ignore the age at which they were brought into the country. With Trump repealing this executive order, there needs to be pressure on Congress to pass legislation to protect these people who were brought into this country likely without a choice and have flourished. How this country treats DACA children will likely be a defining moment in this country. Americans need to put pressure on their representatives to make legislation that would protect “dreamers” despite the President in office.