A Cynical World (Editorial)

by Arkansas Business Editors  on Monday, Sep. 11, 2017 12:00 am   2 min read

“We live in a cynical world. A cynical world,” Jerry Maguire said in the movie.

The cynicism of our world was on full display last week when President Trump announced a six-month limit on former President Obama’s executive order known as DACA. After March 5, 2018, who knows what will happen to hundreds of thousands of young adults who arrived here through no fault of their own?

Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals has been in place for five years and is functioning as intended to bring the young illegal immigrants out of the shadows and to give our country the benefit of the educations we have provided. (Whether it was an unconstitutional overreach by Obama can only be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, and that question would have been settled had the Senate performed its constitutional duty to advise and consent when Obama nominated a justice to replace Antonin Scalia. Instead, the court split 4-4 on the question in June 2016.)

A couple of members of Arkansas’ congressional delegation cynically suggested that Congress was powerless to address DACA until last Tuesday. Sen. John Boozman issued a statement praising Trump for “returning the power to Congress to restore the integrity of our nation’s immigration system.” Rep. French Hill said, “The president’s actions mark a return of legislation authority — where it rightfully belongs ...’”

Congress has always had the power and authority, and if we speculate on why it chose not to act, we might inject even more cynicism. Rep. Steve Womack, to his credit, said, “Congress has the responsibility to address this issue and now is the time to do so.”

Comprehensive immigration reform has been the victim of our cynical age. It may remain elusive. But there is no reason Congress can’t fix DACA so that, in Womack’s thoughtful words, “the proper relief can come for the young people who know only America as their country and who continue to work hard to achieve that American dream.”

 

 

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