President Trump takes political vendetta too far by ending DACA

Kimberly Wilson, Opinions Editor

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Drago Renteria

Protesters gather in front Mission and Seventh Streets in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017. The rally was held in response to President Trump’s phasing out of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program over the next six months. (Jane Tyska/Bay Area News Group)

The Trump administration’s recent decision to end DACA (The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) may stem from his obsession with undermining the Obama era to his desperation to deliver on his campaign promises. Whatever his reasoning may be, they are unjustifiable.

President Donald Trump has never been shy about expressing his disdain for former President Barack Obama and many of the policies he implemented during his tenure. Just a few months ago, he attempted to fulfill one of his most popular campaign promises to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare, only to be blocked by the Senate.

Even before he took office, Trump tried to delegitimize Obama’s presidency. Who could forget the whole birth certificate propaganda in which Trump claimed repeatedly for years that Obama was born in Kenya? Good or bad, Trump seems hell-bent on erasing as many of the laws the Obama administration put into place as he possibly can. This could serve as one explanation as to why Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the ending of DACA on Sept. 5 in six month’s time, a program that was implemented by Obama to protect almost 800,000 young undocumented immigrants from deportation.
The decision was met with people all over the country taking to the streets in protest. Trump has certainly done some questionable things since he took office, but why end a program meant to protect young people, many of them children, from being forced out of the only home they have ever known?

The reason may be simpler than one might think. In an article posted on Time’s website written by Katie Reilly, “Trump campaigned on a promise to crack down on illegal immigration, saying he would ‘immediately terminate’ DACA if elected.” As Trump has been struggling to keep many of the “yugest” promises he made on his campaign trail, (still no sign of the infamous “Wall”) he could very well be feeling the pressure to deliver on something, even if it means completely upending thousands of people’s lives.
Many have tried to justify the decision by spreading a narrative that DACA recipients, (and immigrants in general) are taking benefits away from citizens as well as putting the country in danger of violence and even terrorism. This is simply not the case. DACA recipients are ineligible for any federal benefits, and being convicted of any type of felony or misdemeanor automatically disqualifies them from the program. By all accounts, most DACA recipients are just normal people trying to live their lives and contribute to society.

BuzzFeed news recently spoke with Jesus Contreras, a paramedic who risked his life to help rescue Hurricane Harvey victims. Contreras just happens to a DACA recipient. What sort of nation would America be if it kicks out good, upstanding people like Jesus?
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel declared the city a “Trump-Free Zone” in response to the announcement, and assured all DACA recipients they had “nothing to worry about.” Our own College of DuPage is in concurrence with Emanuel, as a notice was put on the college’s website proclaiming that “DACA students will be able to continue their education [at the institution].”  
 At the end of the day, this move reads like nothing more than Trump playing politics with people’s lives. Obama helped clarify the stakes in a Facebook post.
“Let’s be clear: the action taken today isn’t required legally. It’s a political decision, and a moral question,” Obama wrote. “Whatever concerns or complaints Americans may have about immigration in general, we shouldn’t threaten the future of this group of young people who are here through no fault of their own, who pose no threat, who are not taking away anything from the rest of us.” Yet another mic drop moment from the former president with which I couldn’t agree more.