Is The DREAM Act A California Nightmare?



A recurring illegal immigration nightmare is once again being visited upon the citizens of California — on legal, law-abiding citizens that is.

Pending legislation, commonly known as the “DREAM Act,” would provide a path to legalization for children of illegal aliens by helping them pursue their college education through making them eligible to compete for financial aid opportunities. Twice previously, the California house and senate passed the legislation, but each time Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the bill.

Proponents of the DREAM Act recognize that many of the children of undocumented workers are, in fact, illegal themselves. However, citing that some were brought to this country as children and have successfully completed their high school education, they reason that these same young people should have access to higher education offered to all residents of the Golden State. Many believe that these children are victims of the decisions of their parents and shouldn’t be punished for the choices their parents made.

Opponents to the DREAM Act are unhappy that the state of California is considering a program that would effectively give amnesty to illegal aliens while possibly denying funding their own children. Known as AB 2083, the California DREAM Act, would require the California State University system and the California Community Colleges to provide financial aid in the form of grants, scholarships, work-study offers, and loans to all qualified students who are exempt from nonresident tuition. The law wouldn’t mandate that the University of California follow suit, instead it would “request” that it would.

If the DREAM Act was to pass, then students must have attended and graduated from a California high school for at least three years in order to be eligble for assistance. Further, all undocumented students would be required to file an affidavit stating that they will file an application to legalize their immigration status or will file such an application as soon as they are legally eligible to do so.

California, with a population of at least 38 million inhabitants, has the largest illegal immigration population of any state in the union. Some have put that figure at 5 million, a number which has put tremendous strain on a state in the form of public education, medical assistance, and other welfare programs.

Gov. Schwarzenegger hasn’t said if he will veto the bill if it lands on his desk once again.

Further Reading

Stop the California Dream Act

Stopping Deportation, One Valedictorian At A Time

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