Several of my students wrote stories about DACA. Here’s one of them:
By Ingrid Mera
In response to the Trump administration’s announcement to end DACA, a program that protected nearly 800,000 young adults, thousands of people spilled onto the streets of San Francisco on Sept. 5 to support these undocumented immigrants.
At approximately 5 p.m., people of all backgrounds and ages flooded Market Street with colorful signs and loud chants to draw attention on the issues surrounding the recipients of DACA, which stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, as they marched toward the Federal Building in hopes of getting their voices heard. DACA recipients are also known as “Dreamers.”
“I came out here because someone that I love and plan to spend the rest of my life with is being affected by the removal of DACA,” said Steve Perez, who traveled from the city of Tracy. “I want to support her, and in a sense to show people that it is not just affecting those who rely on it to get an education and work in this country, but everyone around them.”
The rally lasted approximately four hours. Students currently protected by DACA said that teachers cancelled classes and encouraged them to fight for their ability to continue following their dreams. Students who are U.S. citizens also turned out to support their classmates who are affected by this.
Different emotions were on display on Market Street. Members of both sides stood, surrounded by thousands of cheers such as, “We’re here to stay.” Opposing members, although a small number, walked the streets silently telling the Dreamers to “go home.” Several armed police officers surrounded the Federal Building in preparation for any chaos.
Earlier that day in Washington, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said, “The program known as DACA that was effectuated under the Obama administration is being rescinded.” Following the announcement, the Trump administration continued to divide the country, through its announcement Tuesday morning as marches across the country broke out to support these young immigrants.
“In my opinion, people oppose the Dream Act or DACA because they are uneducated,” said Almas Khan, a San Francisco State University student. “An applicant has to meet extremely strict guidelines, some of which are good moral character, have obtained a GED from an American high school and many more.”
DACA has sparked controversies within its five years, including a 10-state coalition asking President Donald Trump to rescind the program earlier this year.
“The level-headed arguments against DACA seem to be completely overwhelmed by the many who simply despise the thought of letting Dreamers succeed in a country they were not born in,” said Steve Perez.
Although the future of DACA is uncertain, Congress will fight over the next six months to provide security for thousands of young Dreamers across the country. Opposing sides will continue to debate right versus wrong, as Dreamers continue to stay positive in a time of fear.