Journalist Jose Antonio Vargas Comes Out as Illegal Immigrant to Fight for DREAM Act

Share
Copy

Vargas says that he made up his mind last December when Congress failed to pass the DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act, a bill that would allow illegal immigrants who came to this country as children to become citizens, if they go to college or serve in the military.

To shine a light on a massive problem, Vargas will be starting an online campaign at defineamerican.com to push for passage of the DREAM Act, which is currently stalled in Congress.

The critics of the DREAM Act say that it will reward undocumented parents, and that it would be an open invitation to fraud, giving an incentive to parents in other countries to come to the U.S. illegally with their children.

"Are we seriously going to deport 11 million people?" Vargas asks. "That's the estimated number of undocumented people in this country. We're not seriously going to do that. We have not had a really serious conversation about this issue.

"We are a part of this society. And I think everyone deserves dignity," he added.

Former Mountain View High principal Pat Hyland, who along with Rich Fisher, the former superintendent of the Mountain View Los-Altos Union school district, helped Vargas in his initial steps towards his career, says that she'd do it all over again to help him reach his potential. Fisher says that fear can't stop kids.

"If you worked with kids that you knew were undocumented and watched them just fade away as they began to approach adulthood, out of fear that they weren't gonna be-- that they'd be found out … The right thing to do is to try to help young people to meet their potential," Fisher told ABC News.

Vargas has certainly reached great heights as a highly ambitious and successful reporter. His goal now is to change a law while changing the outlook of thousands of children whose dream is to become citizens.

"You can call me whatever you want to call me, but I am an American," Vargas said. "No one can take that away from me. No, no one can.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
PHOTO: Patrick Crawford is pictured in this photo from his Facebook page.
Meteorologist Patrick Crawford KCEN/Facebook
Kate Middleton Learns Sign Language
Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images
PHOTO: George Stinney Jr., the youngest person ever executed in South Carolina, in 1944, is seen in this undated file photo.
South Carolina Department of Archives and History/AP Photo
PHOTO: Johns Hopkins University sent nearly 300 acceptance emails to students who had actually been denied.
Kim Hairston/Baltimore Sun/Getty Images