The DREAM Act: What It Means for America
This blog focuses on the need for real Americans [to include legal immigrants] eligible to serve [healthy heterosexuals 41-or-under], who support what our country is seeking to accomplish through military action overseas, to volunteer for military service.
We also urge those not personally eligible to serve, who also support our national military objectives overseas, to encourage their own eligible relatives and friends, their circles of influence, to volunteer for military service.
Although this blog has not taken a position on the war, we conclude that those who support the war, etc., only if "other people" actually fight it, don't really support it after all.
The DREAM Act
This blog has not taken a position on immigration issues. However, one part of the DREAM Act has implications for our topic. Currently, only U.S. citizens, nationals and legal immigrants (of various types) are eligible to serve, if otherwise qualified.
The DREAM Act would allow illegal aliens/undocumented migrants meeting certain criteria, e.g., high school graduation, English fluency, to gain permanent residence through either college-level study or military service. It is aimed at young adults taken to our country as children who know no other home. [State-level DREAM Acts (above, in Denver, CO) focus mostly on expanding eligibility for in-state tuition.]
The federal-level DREAM Act would thus expand eligibility for military service. This blog has previously supported extending eligibility to non-heterosexuals. Here are our thoughts on the DREAM Act as it relates to our topic:
We think that the potential newly eligible enlistees are already a part of our country and would be an asset to our Armed Forces. We salute all Americans and legal immigrants who serve/have served, as well as those undocumented immigrants who have served despite their status.
We are concerned, however, by the DREAM Act's implication that military service to our great nation has become a job that "Americans don't want to do."
It is the duty of our civilian national leadership that keeps our nation at war to raise the forces necessary to accomplish the mission. Our Army and Marine Corps have faced recruiting challenges since late 2004 which continue to this day.
In our opinion, the same civilian political leaders supporting the DREAM Act have an obligation to our country, and to our military, to respect military service as an honorable choice. They can fulfill this obligation by encouraging all eligible Americans, to include legal immigrants, at least to consider volunteering for military service.