To the Princeton community and administration,
Now more than ever, it’s time to take a stand for what we believe is right. You might have seen the that the University, an undergraduate, and Microsoft filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration for its move to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an Obama-era program that provided relief from deportation and temporary work authorization for undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children. Facing an administration actively working against immigrants’ rights, we need to do everything we can to support the undocumented population at Princeton and beyond.
On days like this, I’m proud to call to call myself a Princetonian. Princeton doesn’t often take stances on political issues, but the University’s DACA lawsuit, as well as its lobbying in Congress on behalf of undocumented students, demonstrates its commitment to our community. I’m deeply appreciative to see the University take a stand for DACA students, who walk among us on campus as friends, classmates, and the leaders of tomorrow. The stakes could not be higher. Immigration is something that often sparks heated debate among us. But we should all be able to agree that everyone deserves a fair chance at the American dream.
Acknowledging that I now speak from a position of natural-born citizenship, I will never be able to fully understand the lived experiences or the challenges faced by contemporary undocumented immigrants. But I can offer my empathy, my support, and a commitment to build a better future for my friends, classmates, and countless others.
So, I believe that we should still go further — we need to stand up for the individual rights and dignity of all undocumented people. The estimated 800,000 DACA recipients represent only a fraction of the 11.3 million undocumented people in the United States. There are 500,000 total undocumented immigrants in New Jersey, of which an estimated 17,400 are DACA recipients. And it is our obligation as those working in the service of humanity to stand in solidarity with all undocumented people.
A piece of documentation should not stand in the way of a person’s dreams. It’s on all of us to make undocumented people’s dreams a reality.