In an article by the Portland Press Herald, the 9th Circuit of the Court of Appeals recently ruled that immigrants under the age of 18 in the country illegally do not have the right to free legal aid that is often provided by the US government. According to the article, judges cited their ruling on the basis that there are no laws of the federal government that mandates complimentary legal help to adolescents standing trial for crimes related to immigration.
The article cites that the adolescent who recently learned of his verdict came from the country of Honduras. In addition, both the child and his parent argued in their own defense for journeying into the United States as a result of the continuous wave of violence in their country of heritage. Despite this life-threatening defense, the article explained that the court was aware of the potential consequences if the duo does, in fact, get deported. Overall, the article outlines the particular case of an adolescent and his guardian who face deportation as a result of a federal court’s ruling, and also explains the possible outcomes of other children who reside in the United States without proper documentation. This specific trial brought upon by the Court of Appeals, a federally categorized court system, is likely to receive widespread publicity and criticism as a result of the current political climate. The Trump Administration is often highly vocalized when touching base on certain national issues such as immigration.
Likewise, the widespread support by the Trump Administration to put an end to illegal immigration does not stack the cards in the favor of the countless number of immigrants who face deportation from the United States. On the other hand, the call for bipartisanship in congress may allow for a potential immigration compromise that will help current immigrants gain citizenship in the United States, thus putting an end to children not being provided with legal support. Overall, this particular case may help influence the current issue of immigration within the US. In my opinion, although I do not agree with, nor care for, the illegal immigration that plagues the United States, I do not think it is right for a child in general to not be provided with professional support in certain situations. Under the right circumstances, I believe an illegal immigrant should be provided the chance to gain citizenship, only on the basis that they are law abiding, respectful to American soil, and are posed with credible threats to them in their country of origination. In the case of the boy in the trial presented to the 9th Circuit, I wholeheartedly believe he deserves the right to be presented with some sort of support to help in his defense and rebuttal.
Although the United States as a whole still has great lengths to go until a viable, effective, and efficient immigration deal is reach in Washington, trials such as the one presented in the article should be determined on a case by case basis, taken in with certain considerations.