The BRIDGE (Bar Removal of Individuals who Dream and Grow our Economy) Act, S.128/H.R. 496, is bipartisan legislation recently introduced in Congress to sustain the temporary relief from deportation and employment eligibility offered to youth through the Department of Homeland Security’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Under the BRIDGE Act, young people who came to the United States as children would remain eligible to work and live in the U.S. without fear of deportation and family separation so long as they meet certain requirements: demonstrating a commitment to education or honorable service in the military and having no serious criminal history.
If there is one way we can fight for the rights of migrants, the BRIDGE Act can do it. It is a rare occurrence for Senators Lindsey Graham and Dick Durbin to have a common cause. We are thankful they have found one in this protection of the rights of migrant children. The crimes of the father should not pass to his children and young people who are pursuing an education, serving in our armed forces, and abide by our laws should be granted our clemency and support.
A nation always has the right to defend itself against threats and regulate its borders. The rights of nations, however, cannot abrogate the rights of the human person. Otherwise, the abuses and crimes of regimes like the Soviet Union, China, and North Korea could be justified. Instead, a commitment to a “prolife for the whole life” mindset would compel us to have mercy on these children who are fleeing broken homes or have lost their homes. Such is the exceptionalism of America that we are able to grant such mercy without pain to ourselves.
Call your representatives and tell them to support Sens. Graham and Durbin in this protection of the rights of vulnerable children.