Currently representingDREAMerJose Godinez-Samperio - brought to America at age 9 -in his case for admission to the Florida Bar before the Florida Supreme Court.
We are grateful for the exhaustive efforts ofMark Schlakman, Center for Advancement of Human Rights at Florida State University, in planning this program. Mark will open with brief remarks regarding Florida’s unique approach toward a range of immigration matters over the years.
A very American problem looking for a very American solution.
America's founding generation started with a bold and audacious premise - one entirely new in recorded history: That a diverse people could self-govern. To achieve that nearly impossible notion, they imagined a country where - in Alexander Hamilton's words "the constant clashing of opinion" would serve to strengthen the union rather than weaken it. In it, the very existence of people who disagreed with one another served to strengthen solutions, protect the constitutional rights of those who didn't hold a majority view and build a marketplace of ideas where the best ideas came of the struggle built into the American system of governance.
Today, we find an America that is diverse beyond our founders' imagination. And as a nation of immigrants, we simply don't see the issue of immigration eye-to-eye anymore. At the same time as immigrants strain our resources, they also do the necessary work of our country. As people wait in line for decades to immigrate legally, millions have simply come. As Congress finally takes up the topic of immigration, we'll discuss the reforms and the consequences of those reforms with a broad range of voices on this challenging - and very American - civic debate, a debate with particular importance in the Great State of Florida.
E pluribus unum - out of many, one - is the challenging charge left us by our forefathers. We hope you'll join us for what we hope will be a unique American conversation.
There are few places where the divide in America is more evident than in the debate on immigration. We're barely even having the same conversation and there is very little listening going on. As we "talk", much of what's thrown around is more myth than reality and we've had an incredible failure in our ability to rise above the din and make reasonable adjustments where adjustments are required. The Immigration Policy Center offers a resource where you can learn about the facts and understand a broad view of solutions and ideas moving forward.