More Dreamy News Section Fawning Over the Dream Act

Education columnist Michael Winerip lauds a Dream Act activist, just the latest in a long history of support for the liberal legislation, that would provide amnesty for illegal students: "Isabel Castillo was counting on the Dream Act, and when the Dream Act was defeated in December, it upended her dreams."
Michael Winerip's long education column on the first page of Monday's National news section, "Dreaming of Having An American Life in Full," fawned over Isabel Castillo, an illegal immigrant living in Virginia and an activist for the Dream Act. That's the legislation, rejected by Congress last year, that would have granted amnesty to illegal immigrants who graduate high school and enroll in college. Although supporters of the act emphasize the young students, the original provision of the act applied to illegal immigrants as old as 35 (since knocked down to 30).

Perhaps no other issue exemplifies the liberal slant of the Times than the paper's warm, unquestioning, unjournalistic embrace of the Dream Act and substantial coverage of its puny protests.

Isabel Castillo was counting on the Dream Act, and when the Dream Act was defeated in December, it upended her dreams.

"Of course, I cried," she said.

The Dream Act would have given legal status and a chance for citizenship to people like Ms. Castillo - illegal immigrants who were brought to this country at a young age (Ms. Castillo was 6) and then went on to attend college (Ms. Castillo, now 26, graduated magna cum laude).

Winerip bragged on Castillo for no longer being "invisible," someone who "may have received more media coverage than anyone else in Harrisonburg (population 45,000) that year" and "interviewed by everyone from Brent Finnegan of to the public radio host Bob Edwards."


At the law school, she was one of three speakers at a public-interest class and later a student social-action club. It was Ms. Castillo who captivated the students. She was their age, she dressed like them (when they had to look like lawyers rather than students), she spoke as they spoke and had the same quick intellect.

She could have been one of them.

She told the story of being arrested for taking part in a sit-in at Senator Harry Reid's office. They wanted to know how she could risk being so public.

"I believe the more public you are, the safer you are," she said.

Especially when bathed in the warm and sympathetic spotlight of the New York Times.

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