While this brings a glimmer of hope to all of us who are either immigrants ourselves or have family and friends in that situation (and who doesn’t?), there are still questions as to interpretation and future implementation of certain passages. For instance, what exactly does “Border Security Measures” including “unmanned aerial vehicles and other surveillance equipment and adding border law enforcement agents” mean? Does it mean drones, like the ones they use to monitor terrorist sites? Does an “effective employment verification system” mean more workplace raids? And how would these measures affect future low-skilled immigrants?
While we wait for more detailed explanations for questions like these, and for President Obama’s own immigration proposal, one thing I do hope is that all decision-making parties remember that we’re not just talking about blind statistical numbers here: we’re talking about human beings, who deserve humane treatment. Behind every single penny out of the $1.5 trillion that the legalization of 11 million+ immigrants would contribute to the nation’s gross domestic product over the next decade, there is a living, breathing person looking to make this country better.