In the last five years, the immigration debate has gained momentum. Different governments in Europe have decided to revisit their existing immigration laws. In the USA however, the immigration discourse partly formed the basis of the election checklist. This development makes immigration the most discussed topic after terrorism. Both sides of this discourse raise some strong and legitimate reasons for their stand. Therefore, immigration issue ought to have a sober and objective discussion from both the bureaucrats and the millions of people affected. The recent proposals by the USA government gave the debate a new direction.
The USA government’s proposal is a relief to the majority of the children undocumented. The government through the proposal stipulates a legal way of giving the children of the illegal immigrants a chance to be US citizens. This move is a neutral version of what the president had promised (during campaign), and to some extent, he compromises his firm stand. The roadmap to citizenship, however, has some social effects especially on the families of the millions of immigrants. One of the provisions of the proposal stipulates that after the government gives the immigrants children citizenship, their parents will be deported. This compromise by the USA government affects both sides of the immigration debate.
The most ignored aspect of the immigration debate is the whys. Why is the USA a haven to many people around the world? Why is the USA government reluctant to make a firm policy on illegal immigration? First, the reason why the USA is a target for many immigrants is that it is a world of possibilities. Being a world of opportunities, however, ignores the fact that the USA is a country of laws. It, therefore, raises the question of the validity of- the end justifies the means, (being in the USA illegally) or the due process of being legally in the USA.
Over the years, the USA government has given the immigration debate a human face. Although thousands of illegal immigrants are still deported back to their countries, programs such as DACA have always given children (of the immigrants) immune to deportation. The human face, in this case, provides the innocent children a chance to have what their parents dreamt of, (before coming to the USA). The government, however, has been under criticism on the slow signs of adopting the DACA program. By a large extent, the immigration debate cannot be won just by enacting policies. Policies are part of the solution.