Educational opportunity opens up to immigrants
Published: Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 15:10
Undocumented students are being given a better chance to realize their dreams of higher education from the state of California, allowing them to apply and receive financial aid just like U.S. citizens.
Assemblyman Gil Cedillo’s Development Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act has been in effect since Jan 1.
The California DREAM Act is broken into two different pieces of legislation, AB 130 and 131, that both directly affect undocumented students.
California’s DREAM Act grants an undocumented student, who has attended a California high school for three or more years, and has graduated, the opportunity to receive financial aid to attend a public college or university.
To some, this is a ridiculous concept that is hard to grasp. Some even call it unfair and immoral.
However, undocumented immigrants have come here for the same reason as many American ancestors from Europe did — the search for a better life in a new land. And who can blame them?
In a country partially built by the hands of enslaved Africans and where natives were slaughtered and forced out of their homes by foreigners, it is appalling that U.S. citizens are against providing a means of educating those who wish to better themselves, simply because they weren’t born here.
This is supposed to be the land of opportunity.
That opportunity, however, seems to be for a select few — the rich.
In a land where money equals freedom, those who have little cannot afford to do much. With the cost of a college education rising at every level — community colleges, UCs and state universities, it is becoming more difficult for anyone to pay for higher education.
Many Americans can’t afford to pay for college and in California’s community college system the number of students enrolling is dropping annually thanks to a depleting state budget.
There are plenty of legal American citizens who abuse the financial aid system and undermine the opportunities this country provides, so giving those slots to people who will put them to good use is not unfair or immoral.
It is unfair and immoral to reserve those competitive spaces for lazy Americans who seem to turn their backs on the needy at the drop of a hat.
“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”
This is what the United States is supposed to uphold at all cost.It’s what people have died to protect time and time again.
But it would also seem that this ideal is something that some people are much too willing to forget.