Millions of undocumented students and LGBT members of the military across the U.S. were crushed in disbelief and dissappointed yesterday, after 41 Republican and 1 Democrat Senators voted to block the 2011 Defense Appropiation Bill, which included a provision to end “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and an amendment to pass the DREAM Act.
But the figth for the DREAM Act and to overturn the DADT bill continues.
Photo credit: Sonia Guinansaca
The next 10 days will be crucial to push for these inititiaves to be passed as stand alone bills, before the mid-term elections. I spoke to Sonia Guinansaca (New York State Youth Leadership Council) and Carlos Saavedra (United We Dream), two student activists advocating for the DREAM Act:
TAKE ACTION TODAY!
A press conference will be held today with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and young student leaders, to discuss the future of the DREAM Act.Please Call (202) 224-3121, say where you live and speak to your Senator. You can say:
“Hello, this is [NAME] and I live in [CITY, STATE]. I am calling to ask Senator [SENATOR’S NAME] to support and vote in favor of the DREAM Act bill. This bill will allow thousands of undocumented American youth to fix their status by getting a two-year college degree or joining the military.The DREAM Act is critical for America’s future.”
The anger and frustration among progressive activists was obvious, as partisan interests were more imporant to these Senators, than the human rights of millions of people of this country. See how the Senators voted yesterday.
For the Dreamers this is the chance of their lifetimes. The next task for for the DREAM Act and anti-DADT activists -and their supporters- is to demand their Senators to vote on those initiatives in the next 10 days. Losing a battle doesn’t mean the fight has ended, and we all need to support them.
Senator Durbin (D-IL) with DREAM Act activists. Photo by Carlos A. Quiroz
Why the DREAM Act should be passed