Protecting Our Diverse Democracy

Our so-called-president Trump, is at it again, proving his blind reign to be an enforcement of destroying diversity in this country, as he tries to violate the constitution’s birthright clause, which states all persons born or naturalized in the U.S are guaranteed citizenship and equal law protection. This action goes beyond reforming immigration policy, but rather brings a battle to the front line of protecting our diverse democracy.

In a recent interview with Axios on HBO, Trump made an affirmation to end the birthright of citizenship for children of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants. It’s unclear if, and when, Trump will sign the order, as in the past his threats of administrative action have proven to be a bluff.

As a university that upholds the importance of diversity and inclusion, an action like this, affects our fellow peers just as hard. There are many students who were born here with immigrant/migrant parents, and have been here their whole life.

Junior Arely Lopez is a forensic science, and genetics & biotechnology double major who is Mexican with ties to Spain and the indigenous groups of the Chichimeca/Otomi of Guanajuato, México. Lopez and her family migrated to the United States in 1999 to provide greater educational and lifestyle opportunities that her parents felt couldn’t be obtained in their small hometown.

“Regarding his general actions on immigration since the beginning of his presidency, it has made it harder to undergo the U.S. naturalization process since there are now more requirements to undergo to pass each checkpoint of the process,” said Lopez. “The length of the initial application to state that you are interested in becoming a naturalized citizen has increased along with the submission price.”

An infringement such as this, wouldn’t just be unlawful, but cruel to make someone return to their native country and start all over again. Especially when many people from all over the world come to what is supposed to be a safe place for fair opportunity, safety and freedom.

Although Trump’s threat doesn’t affect Lopez directly, her siblings and other family members are at risk.

“In terms of my family, my uncles are no longer protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), so they no longer have the means to remain in this country while they were attempting to apply for Permanent Residence,” she said. “The termination of DACA has now made it almost impossible for my uncles to keep and maintain themselves in a steady job. Additionally, they will no longer be able to remain in their respective colleges since they no longer have access to financial aid or scholarships to attend.”

Disregarding the constitution’s vows of rightful citizenship crosses a line, which in return contradicts the foundation that the United States was built on.  Revoking the birthright clause will not only create tension between other countries, but set the United States back 150 years. The 14th Amendment was put in place for people of color to have rights as citizens, and also included protection for those born on U.S soil. Tampering with that glorious mark in history won’t bring peace, but rather a nation divided.