Roberto G. Gonzales is an assistant professor at Harvard Graduate School of Education and author of “Lives in Limbo: Undocumented and Coming of Age in America.”
No one has to wonder about the enormous consequences of the Supreme Court’s decision Thursday to let stand a lower-court ruling blocking President Obama’s plan to protect from deportation millions of undocumented immigrants who are parents of citizens or permanent residents. All you have to do is look at how much the smaller program it was modeled on has accomplished and multiply.
A little more than four years ago, the Obama administration announced a new and life-changing program that allowed young immigrants the opportunity to apply for deportation relief and the ability to work legally in the United States. Close to 730,000 young people have taken giant steps toward the American mainstream as a result of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and have, in turn, contributed significantly to American society.