LatinaLista.net — Listening to the President’s State of the Union address, I wasn’t surprised that he mentioned two issues that I’ve devoted a lot of my writing to these past several years: immigration reform and the DREAM Act.
It seemed obvious that to keep Latino support he was going to have to mention those two particular issues because they are uniquely seen as “Latino issues.” It doesn’t seem to matter, or even be widely known, that there is a sizable portion of non-Latinos who would also benefit from immigration reform and passage of the DREAM Act.
However, there is little optimism that this Congress can remain, not only civil with one another, but civil in the treatment of 12 million Latinos who are undocumented.
As the GOP continues to play games with the lives of Latino migrants and ratchet up their demands about security and enforcement before sitting down at the table to discuss either issue, and the Democrats keep readily giving into their demands without drawing a line in the sand, both issues will never be resolved in the manner they should be.
It does no good for the President to “mention” these issues in his State of the Union if he does nothing to push them along.
What will get Republicans to the table, not on their terms, but on the terms that these issues need to be resolved now?
It will take the President using his Executive Powers to call a moratorium on the picking up and deportation of undocumented DREAM Act eligible students.
It will take the President to issue a directive to stop separating families. The notion of deporting parents and leaving children, citizen-born, behind with neighbors or relatives is reprehensible for a country of the stature of the U.S.
It will take the President to threaten more drastic actions to get the GOP to the table and start negotiating.
It takes drawing a line in the sand and saying enough is enough.