United States Immigration System Is Not Fair


Jimmy Slamanca (right) immgrated from Colombia to help provide his family with a better life. PHOTO//LEANDRO FORERO

Leandro Forero, Contributing Writer

         “Our immigration should be based in compassion and a desire to help the other.”

-Ilhan Omar

There was an immigrant named Jimmy Salamanca, who came from Colombia. Because Colombia was unstable back then, his main goal was to bring his family to the United States so that they would be able to embark on a new lifestyle. He wanted to work, and when the time came to get his citizenship, he was thrilled because his dream was about to become a reality. However, his application was turned down. Salamanca thought he had disappointed his family. Now he had to wait four years before he could reapply. Jimmy Salamanca is my grandpa, and this is the adversity he- as well as other immigrants- faced when coming to America.

The United States has had a broken immigration system for years. This system is supposed to bring equality and give immigrants a taste of the American Dream. Instead, it brings suffering and unwillingness to help them unless they are legalized citizens. Immigrants want to be treated fairly by the system partly because they present benefits as a workforce for the economy. They need a better system because it would allow people to work and be able to make a living.

Salamanca often felt anxious whenever he went to work. He was in fear because he did not know if the government would ever deport him back to Colombia. He felt that if he were deported, he would be letting his family down. 

“I was terrified that one day ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) could show up at my door and deport my family. In 2012, President Obama created DACA, and for the first time, I felt that I had a future. I was finally like my peers.”

DACA (Deferred Action of Childhood) has granted most immigrants the privilege to work, however. When most immigrants work, the job responsibilities are minimal and their potential for promotion is rare. This can often help them to avoid deportation. DACA has also been essential in helping to provide these immigrant workers with medical care.

The United States is said to be a country that is founded on freedom and protection for citizens. The United States Immigration system is corrupt overall, and it does not help immigrants like my grandpa. Instead, this system mistreats them. This system does not represent equal rights for anyone who wants to come into the country. It needs to be more beneficial for the immigration process. Thankfully, the system has slowly progressed over time for immigrants who are becoming citizens. This country is the land of the free, and people who come into this country should have the freedom to human rights and be treated equally.