In the United States, citizens are fortunate to enjoy many freedoms and opportunities. These include freedom from persecution with regard to religion and freedom of choice with regard to personal views and political ideologies. Sadly, millions of people around the world don't enjoy these same freedoms and spend their lives fearing persecution, violence and death.
As both the Democrat and Republican parties attempt to decide who should represent their parties in the upcoming presidential election, the differences between the parties and their ideological beliefs has never been clearer. In the upcoming presidential election, immigration is slated to be a main issue with Democrat candidates favoring immigration reforms which would make it easier for families to stay together and in the U.S. while many Republican candidates support mass deportation and building an actual wall along the U.S. and Mexican border.
According to The Sentencing Project, as of 2013, an estimated 2.2 million people called a U.S. prison or jail home. This number is higher than incarceration rates in any other country and equates to a 500 percent increase within the last three decades. In an effort to reduce the U.S. incarceration rate, in 2014, the U.S. Sentencing Commission voted to "redraw federal sentencing guidelines for some drug offenses." In accordance with the new sentencing guidelines, thousands of nonviolent drug offenders who are serving out prison sentences are slated for early release.
For many five-year-old children in the U.S., their biggest worries and fears may include imaginary monsters under the bed, having to share toys with friends and trying to get out of brushing their teeth. For one little girl, who was recently allowed through a street barricade to meet Pope Francis as his processional rode through Washington D.C., her concerns are much more serious and heartbreaking.
Shrewd businessman, real estate mogul, author and television personality are just a few of the titles that Republican presidential candidate hopeful Donald Trump has held. After years of threatening to run for numerous political offices, including president; few took Trump seriously when he announced that he was campaigning to be the 2016 Republican candidate.
America proudly declares that is it the "land or the free and the home of the brave." The unalienable rights of U.S. citizens are well-documented in the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence. Under the decrees of these and other founding U.S. documents, citizens are protected from governmental overreaches related to unauthorized search and seizure and the right to due process.
The United States was founded by immigrants who, despite their many differences, all shared a common dream--having the opportunity to build a better life. Despite the fact that our country's founding fathers were all immigrants, today's U.S. immigration laws are often restrictive and punitive for those who come to the U.S. and hope to build a better life.
President Obama drew praise from both law enforcement officials and immigrant advocacy groups back in November when he announced the termination of the Secure Communities program and the introduction of the Priority Enforcement Program, which is focused on deporting "felons, not families."
It appears that we’re seeing fewer immigrants held in detention centers in the United States. In any case, the number is the lowest in close to 10 years. Though for most years in the last decade, the numbers of immigrants detained exceeded 30,000, the numbers of immigrants detained in 2015 fell to 26,374 people.
For the past several years, one of the most contentious aspects of U.S. immigration law has been the federal detention and deportation program known as Secure Communities.