Recently, President Donald Trump announced that he plans to move ahead with dismantling DACA, an immigration program aimed at helping more than 800,000 undocumented immigrants who entered the country under the age of 16. As it stands now, however, Congress has up to six months to reverse the decision. Thankfully, the leader of this university has already done what the president of the country would not by speaking out against this decision in the form of a letter addressed directly to President Trump.
This publication has repeatedly criticized President Hamilton for not putting action behind his statements and promises to the NYU community. Hamilton’s past promises have fallen flat — most notably the talked up Diversity Task Force failing to meet promised deadlines. In the wake of the 2016 election, President Hamilton gestured toward a commitment to undocumented students. However, he was rightfully criticized for the timidity of his rhetoric and seeming lack of commitment to undocumented students. This letter is a step in the right direction. Given the hate coming out of Washington, this university needs strong moral leadership and an unwavering commitment to the well-being of every member of the NYU community.
To lighten the burden of deporting 800,000 undocumented individuals currently under DACA, Trump proposed a six-month delay, in which Congress can pass legislation to repeal his decision. Because both Republicans and Democrats are in favor of the Obama-era act and 70 percent of those polled agree with the politicians, a response from Congress that subverts Trump’s stance, is expected. Hopefully, Andrew Hamilton’s statement will contribute to the national sentiment, which will push Congress to pass bills repealing Trump’s viewpoint. Moreover, NYU students can help by speaking out against the cancellation of DACA and by encouraging President Hamilton to continue to stand up against Trump’s hate.
In the past, President Hamilton has mainly advocated for certain political causes via emails to the NYU community. While this is important, penning a letter directly to President Trump is much more effective in trying to save DACA. As this decision moves forward, President Hamilton must continue to speak out for undocumented Americans. In addition, the student body must expand current efforts, such as the Immigrant Defense Initiative, meant to protect undocumented students. As a university that prides itself on diversity of all forms, this is the only option.
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, Sept. 5 print edition. Email the Editorial Board at [email protected].