Target: Barack Obama, President of the United States
Goal: Demand that the President use executive authority to advance immigration reform as promised rather than caving to political pressure and delaying action yet again
The United States Congress has shown itself unwilling to address the plight of exploited migrant workers, young refugees fleeing violence in Central America and others caught in the current net of immigration law. To the relief of immigrant families and their allies President Obama vowed in June, 2014 to take executive action on the issue. Yet despite national protests urging much-needed reforms, and the toxic anti-immigrant sentiment taking hold in many communities, the President has decided to kick the can down the road yet again.
Common Dreams reports a source close to the President has assured the public he is “confident in his authority to act, and he will before the end of the year.” This is a far cry from the aggressive timeline set by his earlier comments, in which the President promised to review policy recommendations “before the end of summer” and “to adopt those recommendations without further delay.” The reason for his cold feet? It depends on the day, apparently. The President has said that acting before November’s mid-term elections could harm any new immigration policy. According to NBC News, President Obama defended his change of heart by blaming the recent surge in unaccompanied youth fleeing across the border with Mexico for complicating the issue.
Regardless of his rationale, the President has made commitment after commitment to advance humane immigration reform and has yet to follow through. Rather than implement common-sense reforms his administration has deported more people than any president’s in history. Families continue to be torn apart while billions are wasted on ineffective and inhumane detention and border security. Enough is enough. Demand that President Obama take executive action now to end this human rights crisis.
Dear President Obama,
Like many people I was inspired by your commitment to take executive action on immigration reform. The United States’ current detention and deportation system has caused terrible suffering; it seemed that change was finally on the horizon. But rather than stick to your word you have chosen to yet again delay any reforms, offering weak excuses for your inaction. The American people, most of whom can count immigrants among their recent ancestors, have every reason to feel betrayed by this change of heart.
While mid-term elections are obviously high stakes, for Democrats and Republicans alike, this is hardly a reason to hold off announcing your executive action. What has really changed since June, when you vowed to implement reform “without further delay?” If anything, showing genuine leadership in the face of Republican inaction would benefit Democratic candidates in the November elections. And what better reason is there for immediate action than the current crisis of undocumented youth fleeing violence in Central America?
I urge you to follow through on your commitment to advance humane, comprehensive immigration form without delay. Put politicking aside, and do what is both morally right and best for your great nation.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Nofx221984 via Wikimedia Commons