Letter: DREAM Act a nightmare for U.S. students, workers

October 18, 2012

Marylanders will soon vote on question 4, the DREAM Act. According to Calvin Ball's Oct. 11 column, we should vote "yes" on 4 because "all students (should) have access to the education they need." I agree, Mr. Ball. But first, let us look at who won't have access to the $16,000 annual subsidy provided by in-state tuition.

Citizens from other states will not get a break (and may be crowded out as non-resident slots fill). Legal immigrants with proper visas will not get a break. Maryland kids who transfer home after attending an out-of-state school will not get a break. Maryland kids who are financially dependent on parents who move out of state will not get a break.

Why should we spend $64,000 of tax money over four years to subsidize each non-citizen, while our own citizens go begging? The Wall Street Journal says that American students are now over $1 trillion in debt!

Mr. Ball feels the DREAM Act should pass because we "don't fear minorities." I agree, Mr. Ball. However, U.S. citizen minorities are hurt most by illegal immigration. According to the Inter-American Development Bank, $69.2 billion was sent "back home" to Latin America by undocumented workers in 2009 alone. That money is forever lost to U.S. workers and permanently removed from the U.S. economy. Between 2009 and 2010, immigrants (57% illegal) have gained 656,000 jobs, while U.S. born workers lost 1.2 million jobs. Most of these jobs lost were minority jobs. Mr. Ball, if you want to help minorities, help US born minorities get jobs and education first!

Finally, Mr. Ball states that the children of illegal immigrants are, "our country's future leaders." There I must disagree with Mr. Ball. American kids are our country's future leaders. Annapolis, however, has repealed merit scholarships for Maryland's brightest kids to help offset these subsidies for non-citizens.

If you pay taxes, if you have children, and if you vote, vote "no" on 4.

Amy Chai

Ellicott City

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