News

Zuckerberg, Chan give $5M to undocumented-immigrant college fund

Donation aims to aid Bay Area students who are eligible for U.S. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and wife Priscilla Chan are donating $5 million to TheDream.US, a scholarship fund for young undocumented immigrants, Zuckerberg announced Wednesday.

"America was founded as a nation of immigrants. We ought to welcome smart and hardworking young people from every nation and to help everyone in our society achieve their full potential," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post.

TheDream.US was founded in 2013 by Don Graham, his wife, journalist Amanda Bennett, philanthropist Henry R. Muñoz III and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez.

The organization provides up to $25,000 in scholarships for undocumented students deemed eligible for the country's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, a policy President Barack Obama created by executive order in 2012. The initiative was in part a reaction to the defeat of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, which failed to pass in Congress in 2010.

DACA calls for "deferred action" against certain undocumented youth who were brought to the U.S. as children and authorizes these non-U.S. citizens to remain in the country and apply for a work permit. Under DACA, deferred action is currently valid for three years.

In 2014, Obama expanded DACA so that more immigrants who arrived or remained in the U.S. illegally as children could qualify.

To qualify for DACA, applicants must meet certain requirements including arrival in the U.S. before their 16th birthday; continuous residency in the U.S. since June 15, 2007; 31 years old or younger on June 15, 2012; completion of high school or receipt of a GED, honorary discharge from the military, or current enrollment in school; and no conviction of a felony or serious misdemeanor, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

Zuckerberg and Chan's donation will be used specifically to aid undocumented immigrants in the San Francisco Bay Area attend college, according to a press release.

"This is just a small step towards creating immigration and education solutions that help our community and country make progress," Zuckerberg wrote.

Related content:

Undocumented 'Dreamers' await passage of immigration legislation that would change their lives

Comments

14 people like this
Posted by Oddity
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Jun 17, 2015 at 3:37 pm

[Post removed.]


95 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 17, 2015 at 4:09 pm

Nayeli is a registered user.

Ridiculous decision, Mark. As a legal immigrant from Mexico, I feel that you're rewarding individuals who are ignoring the laws of this nation. There are millions of legal immigrants in the United States who dream of going to college. Most of them are from homes with similar financial circumstances. Why not support them first?

These sort of things cheapen the sacrifices that those of us who followed the law have made. I know that my opinion may not be popular here, but I would like people to realize that there are millions of legal immigrants. Many of us "do the jobs that no one else will do." Instead of awarding those who ignore U.S. immigration laws, why not award those who sacrificed to enter this nation legally?


14 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 17, 2015 at 4:13 pm

What about the children brought here illegally by their parents when they were little? They did not ask to be brought here and are not responsible for their parents' illegal actions. I do not know what the proper thing to do would be. I only know that I feel for those kids that are here illegally through no fault of their own.

Note that I am a legal immigrant myself.


40 people like this
Posted by Maurice
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jun 17, 2015 at 4:14 pm

You're not alone, Nayali.


59 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 17, 2015 at 4:24 pm

Nayeli is a registered user.

@ My take: I understand that there are many apparent gray areas in illegal immigration (as with any crime). However, if a family broke into your home and took up residence in your garage, it doesn't mean that they can stay simply because they have children.

Believe me: I feel for those kids. I knew many of them growing up. They were my neighbors, classmates and even co-laborers. Still, many (if not most) of them -- including those who had been raised in the U.S. -- felt more "Mexican" than "American." If forced to return to the nation of their citizenship, they would acclimate as quickly as they did when they came here with their parents. After all, we did when we moved here.

My point is that illegal immigration will not stop if the laws are changed to reward those who broke the law in the first place. In fact, I strongly suspect that it will increase the number of immigrants that ignore the law and move here. More importantly, I believe that it will not produce the type of reform that is necessary in Mexico, Latin America or other nations from whence they came.

I feel that the children should be processed through the legal and immigration systems just like their parents with the understanding that they were minors. If their parents are deported, then they should be too.


14 people like this
Posted by Oddity
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Jun 17, 2015 at 4:34 pm

[Post removed.]


25 people like this
Posted by Bru
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 10:36 am

Bru is a registered user.

Gotta echo the negative reaction many people seem to be having to this.
Of all the things to do this says more about Zuckerberg and Chan and their
feelings about Americans versus some kind of globalist agenda that puts
people in the developed countries last.

I don't have the answer to the question of how to deal with the children of
parents who chose to break the law, that is a huge thorny issue that maybe
has no good answer, but folding it in with local social issues and making
it seem part of a compassion agenda just seems like Orwellian Newspeak,
and Newthink.

This sends out a message to the world that says, no matter what the laws
say, not matter how Americans feel about it or are affected by it ... wink,
wink, go ahead and come here because there are forces who will support
you no matter what the laws or people say.

How does that exist?


10 people like this
Posted by bill1940
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 10:43 am

bill1940 is a registered user.

Bravo to Mark and Priscilla !! If I had an extra $5,000,000 I'd do the same thing ...


8 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 18, 2015 at 11:11 am

Curmudgeon is a registered user.

Gee. I wonder how many critics of Mark and Priscilla have argued in favor of absolute property rights on other threads.

It's their own money, folks.


19 people like this
Posted by Jerry99
a resident of Barron Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 11:25 am

Jerry99 is a registered user.

Same thing,
We have a tsunami of illegals coming in from Mexico and Central America because they know we won't deport them. We still have the 60,000 mostly teenagers that came from Central America last year and Obama distributed them over all states so they would remain hidden from the US taxpayer, who is paying for them. Am sure they won't ever be deported, but stay here and remain an endless drain on the US taxpayer as we pay for education, medical care, and jails.
If I had 5 million to spare I would give it to the Minutemen, who help the Border Patrol find the illegals in the desert area of Arizona and Texas.
But yes, deport all illegal aliens. And the "dreamers" - they are illegal and deport them all, then they can get in line for a green card, just like all the other people waiting for green cards.


19 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 18, 2015 at 11:25 am

Curmudgeon is a registered user.

"As a legal immigrant from Mexico, I... "

Yep, you got yours alright.


Remember, you are "legal" only per the laws written by a government that was founded by illegal immigrants from England, who BTW dealt with the natives much much more harshly than the new "illegals" treat the existing residents. So what's the basis of your presumed moral superiority over the most recent "illegals"?


13 people like this
Posted by Emily Renzel
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:04 pm

Emily Renzel is a registered user.

Kudos to Mark Zuckerberg & Priscilla Chan for their thoughtful contribution to provide education to the Dream kids. I agree with those who point out that these young people have grown up here and consider themselves part of our communities. They make it to college only if they have learned English well and have excelled at the High School level. Education is hard work for these kids and this contribution will lighten their load a little and not harm any of the rest of us.


16 people like this
Posted by Worried PAUSD parent
a resident of Southgate
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:31 pm

Worried PAUSD parent is a registered user.

@Nayeli "Para que la cuña apriete, tiene que ser del mismo palo". How sad. No paying it forward for you huh? The Zuckerberg's understand that these children, in order to become productive members of society have to be helped. Marginalizing and taking away opportunities will only create resentment that will harm this country. As an example we have the Boston Marathon bombers. They have this problem in England and France with terrorists being bred from within the ostracized children of immigrants. The people that where brought here as babies or young kids love and know only the country they have grown up in. They deserve a chance.


11 people like this
Posted by Nora Charles
a resident of Stanford
on Jun 18, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Nora Charles is a registered user.

Now, how about a nice contribution to the decaying animal shelter?


Like this comment
Posted by Be Kind PA
a resident of JLS Middle School
on Jun 19, 2015 at 12:04 am

Be Kind PA is a registered user.

A thought:

"Reaction Formation occurs when a person feels an urge to do or say something and then actually does or says something that is effectively the opposite of what they really want.

"It also appears as a defense against a feared social punishment. If I fear that I will be criticized for something, I very visibly act in a way that shows I am personally a long way from the feared position."

Web Link


3 people like this
Posted by Greenacres
a resident of Green Acres
on Jun 19, 2015 at 12:08 am

Greenacres is a registered user.

The world is not perfect. (Has no one heard the saying, 'Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good'?) This is doing the right thing in an imperfect world.

Maybe someday we will solve the big issues of illegal immigration. Maybe we won't. In the meantime, our nation benefits when we have educated workers. Too little is made of the gratitude people feel to a nation that gives them a chance.

If someone is drowning and needs a hand out, you don't stand there analyzing how things should be and how you would help if things were only that way. Thank you to Chan and Zuckerberg for doing the right thing despite potential political blowback.

I suppose no one remembers this:

"Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"


12 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 19, 2015 at 10:10 pm

Nayeli is a registered user.

@ Curmudgeon:

You wrote: 'As a legal immigrant from Mexico, I...' Yep, you got yours alright."

Yes, we "got ours" alright. My father struggled working in Mexico to earn the money that it would take for our entrance into the United States. He didn't decide to ignore the laws and break into the nation. Rather, he worked hard for us to be legally admitted into the nation and then we all worked hard to succeed here. Nothing is more offensive to me than for people to insinuate that those of us who did it legally (and believe that others should do it legally) somehow do not care for those who do not.

As a legal immigrant, I understand that the U.S. must maintain border policies that don't include "open borders" simply because non-Americans want to live here. In fact, Mexico has some of the most rigid border laws -- because they do not want to pay for Central America's poor. Mexico now deports more illegal immigrants than the U.S. The Associated Press had an interesting article about it just yesterday:

Web Link

You wrote: "Remember, you are "legal" only per the laws written by a government that was founded by illegal immigrants from England, who BTW dealt with the natives much much more harshly than the new "illegals" treat the existing residents. So what's the basis of your presumed moral superiority over the most recent "illegals"?"

Simply put, this isn't true. The colonists living in the colonies weren't "illegal." Have you studied how immigrants (including indentured servants) arrived to the U.S. during the colonial era? There was certainly a processing period.

Moreover, the idea that Europeans "broke into" the American continent -- as though there was some sort of central government in the New World -- is a silly concept.

The New World -- especially north of Mexico -- was populated by diverse tribes that did not populate 90% of the land (from ocean to ocean) and most of those certainly lacked clearly established borders. By many estimates, there are more people currently living in New York City than the indigenous people who lived north of the Rio Grande in 1492 (when Columbus first landed in the New World).

More importantly, you're comparing apples with oranges. You're almost arguing against any sort of respect for border laws in the 21st Century because you believe that Europeans didn't respect indigenous tribes about five centuries ago. Without meandering to a "two wrongs don't make a right," I find it funny that you're arguing against border laws by decrying the "borders" that were violated by people who haven't been alive for several centuries.

I certainly believe in reform. However, the reform mostly needs to happen in the nations from which people are fleeing. Those governments will never reform if their citizens take the easy (and encouraged) illegal way out. Scholarships like this are wrong because they actually encourage and reward illegal immigration and law breaking.

Regardless of whether this might be motivated by a desire for cheap international labor, the bottom line is that illegal immigration is still illegal -- and there are too many unemployed and unfunded Americans looking for jobs and educational opportunities. We can quote Emma Lazarus's The New Colossus as long as we want, but it doesn't change the fact that immigration policy was strictly enforced when the Statue of Liberty was unveiled and Ellis Island was processing European immigrants. The idea of open borders is destructive to the foundation of any nation.


4 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 19, 2015 at 10:48 pm

Curmudgeon is a registered user.

@Nayeli

Rationalizations are rationalizations. The fact is that Europeans took "America" from its native inhabitants without their permission. That is theft by any reckoning, which is illegal by any system of laws since the ten commandments, and certainly by many legal systems before.

Fact is, history is full of migrations and conflicts between the natives and the newcomers, which of necessity get worked out, and to the enrichment of both cultures. We are experiencing one of these. It is working itself out, as young people ignore their elders' prejudices, make friends across cultures, and find mates. Why not accept it? You will have to eventually.


Like this comment
Posted by Be Kind PA
a resident of JLS Middle School
on Jun 19, 2015 at 11:55 pm

Be Kind PA is a registered user.

I'm going to post this again because I think it is very relevant to recent posts.

"Reaction Formation occurs when a person feels an urge to do or say something and then actually does or says something that is effectively the opposite of what they really want.

"It also appears as a defense against a feared social punishment. If I fear that I will be criticized for something, I very visibly act in a way that shows I am personally a long way from the feared position."

Web Link


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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