During one of many exchanges on the immigration issue during the Fox News Channel/Google GOP presidential candidates’ debate last Thursday evening, Governor Rick Perry of Texas defended his position on offering in-state tuition aid to the foreign-born children of illegal immigrants:
If you say that we should not educate children who come into our state for no other reason than that they’ve been brought their through no fault of their own, I don’t think you have a heart. We need to be educating these children because they will become a drag on our society. I think that’s what Texans wanted to do. Out of 181 members of the Texas legislature when this issue came up [there were] only four dissenting votes. This was a state issue. Texas voted on it. And I still support it today.
What is he talking about? The Senate voted down the Dream Act in December, 2010, didn’t they?
Well, in 2001, Governor Rick Perry signed Texas House Bill 1403 into law. This law has become known as the Texas Dream Act:
This bill states that non-citizens (illegal immigrants) may be able to apply for state financial aid if they have:
Lived in Texas for three years, at least part of the time with a parent or court-appointed legal guardian
Graduated from a Texas high school (or received a GED)
Not attended an institution of higher education before fall 2001
Signed an affidavit stating they will apply for permanent residency as soon as they are eligible.
In other words, they promise to become citizens…cross their hearts.
All is not milk and honey for the children of illegal immigrants seeking a free college education in the Lone Star State. According to Texas State Technical College, there’s a catch:
However, as with any type of state financial aid, funding is very limited and everyone that qualifies may not receive an award due to a lack of funding. You must complete the affidavit available on this [their] website and you should be prepared to provide any proof or documentation that may be requested by the college.
Can you say: leaving yourself an out?
Even though Texas has their own version of the Dream Act, the state is still struggling with citizens who remained opposed to illegal immigration, as the Austin-American Statesman reports:
Supporters of stricter immigration laws today said Gov. Rick Perry needs to leave the presidential campaign trail and call the Legislature back to tackle a ban on so-called sanctuary cities.
A sanctuary city prohibits law enforcement from asking about the immigration status of the people they detain. In January, Perry put a ban on sanctuary cities on his list of emergency items, meaning he wanted the Legislature to tackle them promptly. But the ban did not pass in the regular session, nor in a 30-day special session that followed.
“Governor Perry needs to clarify where he stands on illegal immigration and he needs to come back to Texas and finish the people’s unfinished business,” said JoAnn Fleming, who chairs the advisory committee for the Legislature’s Tea Party Caucus.
She added, “Governor Perry needs to take care of the issue. If it was an emergency item in January, if it was an emergency item in May for the special session, it is an emergency item today.”
Opposition from Democrats and key figures in the business community who lobbied the Legislature kept the ban from passing in either the regular or special session.
While I do believe that Governor Perry is a good man, and if it does come down to choosing between him and Governor Romney, I would choose him, I have a question to respectfully ask:
What part of the word “illegal” do you not understand? What makes the current influx of illegal immigrants exempt from the rules and regulations that every other generation of immigrants to this country had to abide by in order to become legal citizens of the greatest nation in the world?
By being here illegally, they are not entitled to the same rights as natural born or naturalized American citizens. In fact, their entry into this sacred land is no better than that of someone who breaks into someone’s home, does their dishes, cuts their yard, cleans their house, and then helps themselves to their food and drives their car without asking. This is in no way a human rights issue. Freedom is God-given.
And with freedom comes responsibility. With citizenship comes responsibility, like paying taxes and making your own way. Illegal immigration reminds me of the amorous boyfriend who wants everything a young woman will give him, but will leave her at the first mention of marriage. This is not a civil rights issue. Illegals do not have the same rights as American citizens. With our rights, come the responsibilities of citizenship.
And, by the way, please tell the illegal students that the Mexican flag, by protocol, shall always be flown in a subordinate position to the American flag in this country. Also, please remind them that the English language is the language spoken in this country.
While the children of illegal immigrants should be given the opportunity to become contributing American citizens, it needs to be done without rewarding them for their parents’ crime.
Because, as the English found out in the Revolutionary War – when the Prince of Hesse-Cassel, Frederick II, made off like a bandit in his dealings with George III by selling the services of 12,000 Hessians to the English at £7 4s. a head – you can’t buy allegiance to a flag.