A Los Angeles Times story from over the weekend reported that the conflict over illegal immigration isn’t just between Republicans and Democrats, or citizens and non-citizens, but also between different sects of the illegal-immigrant population.
According to the Times story, some illegal immigrants who have not received legal protections such as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program feel that DACA recipients act entitled and have failed to use their status to advocate for other illegal immigrants.
“I’m very bitter,” said Sam Paredes, who came to the U.S. illegally 30 years ago. “These DACA kids definitely have this sense of entitlement. People fought for them and they got DACA and they got their work permit and then they went to sleep, instead of working to fight for the rest of us.”
The Times article also featured an anecdote from 35-year-old illegal immigrant Alessandro Negrete, who lashed out at a friend and DACA recipient for complaining about DACA being repealed.
“You think you have it hard? You at least have legal status. For some people like me, my mom and some of my neighbors, we don’t have that,” Negrete said he angrily told his friend.
One sentence from the story highlights what could be perceived as a sense of entitlement from all illegal immigrants in the United States — namely, a feeling that they should not be painted as “criminals” despite being in violation of the law. From the article:
Although DACA is slated to end in March, activists and legislators, including some Republicans, have rallied to support the program. This comes at a time when many of the country’s approximately 11 million immigrants in the country illegally feel painted as criminals and DACA recipients are being leveraged by the Trump administration to achieve concessions from Democrats on stricter border security and tougher immigration enforcement.
Legislators are still working on potential long-term solutions for "Dreamer" immigrants, although negotiations have stalled over Democrats' refusal to concede to the border security/border wall conditions proposed by the Trump administration.