Asking students to keep Dreaming?

Dream Act offers a fair chance ” not special privileges.

Nationally, 65,000 students qualify for the Dream Act each year. The Dream Act, which is an acronym for development, relief, and education for alien minors, would allow children of undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition at public institutions of higher education. This act aims to counter the federal provision that encourages states to make students pay out-of-state tuition.

The Dream Act does not provide undocumented students with any “special privileges.” Students still have to go through the process of applying and being accepted to schools, and they must have attended a Minnesota high school for at least two years to qualify.

The Dream Act ultimately poses the question of ethics regarding the status of a population in this country: Is it ethical for individuals to inherit crimes? If not, then why does the state feel the need to punish children for the decisions of their parents? It’s actually quite appalling that this battle is taking place, since this legislation would not place any financial burden on the state. The Dream Act serves the interest of the taxpayers by supporting an educated population that can invest in our communities. And quite frankly, these immigrants do pay taxes, but nonetheless do not receive the benefit of their service to this state. For a country obsessed with locking people up and then complaining about prison costs, would it not be better to simply provide opportunities for people so they have options outside poverty and crime? The shameful resistance toward the Dream Act conveys the desire of some to maintain the status quo and have the tool of knowledge and power over the poor and underrepresented.

The Dream Act struggle should push beyond in-state tuition toward financial aid considerations. For the time being, it is a beautiful step toward this goal of access. This legislation will help many who do at least qualify for the private scholarships, which do not require citizenship and are available for undocumented students. The Dream Act is necessary for those talented students to attain a college education.