March 2nd, 2012
05:33 PM ET

Miami valedictorian fighting deportation

By John Couwels, CNN

(CNN) - An immigration judge has ruled two teenage girls, including a Miami high school valedictorian, are to be deported for being in the country illegally.

Daniela Pelaez, 18, and her sister Dayana came to the United States with their parents from Colombia 14 years ago and never left - overstaying their tourist visas.

A Miami immigration judge ruled this week that the two girls must be deported to Colombia, leaving the teenagers in shock.

"Education not deportation!" chanted fellow students Friday during a protest outside the North Miami Senior High School, where Pelaez is valedictorian.

The high school senior has a 6.7 grade point average and is at top of her class out of 823 students, said a school administrator.

"She's a good citizen, besides being a brilliant girl," said North Miami Senior High School administrator Larry Jurrist, who added he can't understand why the judge decided to deport the girls.

Pelaez told CNN anchor Suzanne Malveaux Friday that her family has been battling to stay in the United States legally.

"Colombia is my roots, but this is all I know," said Pelaez, who has applied to continue her studies at several top-tier schools, including Dartmouth College, Duke University and Trinity College.

The teenager wants to study cellular and molecular biology for a career in the medical field.

"What I have worked for since I was 4 years old - to live the American dream. And I feel like I earned it," she said.

The teen was shocked by the judge's ruling since her brother was allowed to become a citizen and is currently serving in the U.S. military. He has toured in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman Nestor Yglesias issued a statement Thursday on the teens' case that read: "Daniela and Dayana Pelaez have reserved the right to appeal an immigration judge's decisions ordering them to return to Colombia. ICE will not take any action against them while they pursue additional legal options."

The federal agency could also decide to take no further action, allowing the girls to remain in the United States.

"Can you imagine that? Literally putting a postage stamp on her forehead and send her packing," Michael Wildes, a professor at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, said about the case.

"This is completely out of character for our country," he told CNN. "I know the courts and the prosecutor will do right by her."

Pelaez said her attorney will appeal the judge's ruling and the teenager hopes she will get the opportunity to stay in the United States so she can decide in April which college to attend.

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Filed under: Education • Immigration • Latino in America • Who we are
soundoff (3,081 Responses)
  1. Jorge

    Todd, When I lived in Puerto Rico I managed to work in Curazao, the Dominican Republic, Miami and the British Virgin Islands. No one ever complained about my taking their job because they knew that I was very good at what I did and that I contributed to the local economy with my efforts. Before that no one in the University of P.R. complained that I was taking up a seat that belonged to a native-born son, because they knew I had earned it. Here back in the 'states I heard backhanded remarks about my descent by my troublesome first boss who himself belongs to a U.S. minority, been asked why I got the job over locals by my coworkers and have recieved sidelong glances in meetings when I'm introduced using my full name, yet my current bosses, far more up-to-date and efficient than my first one, acknowledge my contribution and my input much more readily than was the case before. You can blame others for the shortcomings in your career all your life and stereotype them all you want, but that will never really help you, because wherever you go, your worth to others will depend solely on YOU.

    March 9, 2012 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in Iowa

      Jorge. if that is your name. puerto rico. that says much. as for my job. i am in the construction business. i go to jobs and i see many hispanic that are taking my job. the rich dont want to pay to have 5 guys do a job. they would rather pay 15 guys do one job, less pay, no benefits, all pocket cash for them.

      now you might have that GED for a college education, but that dont give you a right to say that i am below you, does it? because thats what your making this out to be. your so full of yourself i bet the desk has a place for your head.

      March 9, 2012 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Joanne

    The hardships facing legal immigration are daunting, and there should be a blog just on that issue, but this blog focused on a high school senior, who , though she has lived here since she was four years old is facing deportation.

    March 7, 2012 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  3. ALANE

    What about the similar issues facing 1000s of LEGAL immigrate children when they turn 21. Case in point is my son.

    My family and I have been LEGAL immigrants in the United States for over 16 years. During this time we have diligently maintained our legal immigrant status, following all the governing rules, regulations, and laws. When my son - who is a National Honor Society inductee, varsity letterman in academics and athletics, Y.E.S. volunteer, and Boy Scouts of America Eagle Scout - turned 21 earlier this year he would have had 10 days to leave the United States, and in addition he lost the opportunity to get derivative permanent residency. (My daughter will face the same situation in a couple years.)

    To allow my son to complete his college degree in biology, we went through the expense and effort to change him to a student visa. Upon completion of his degree, and the corresponding expiration of his student visa, he will follow the law and reluctantly leave the United States - after living here since he was 5 years old.

    I wish there would be reporting on the notable issues and hardships faced and endured by LEGAL immigrants who are pursuing permanent residency to become citizens under the current system, as we are getting lost in the debates over (illegal) immigration. It would be relatively easy for congress and the administration to fix these issues and hardships for legal immigrants, but …

    March 7, 2012 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |
  4. SLIMMMMMSHADYYYY!,!!,!,!,!,

    Don't hate, just appreciate!!!!!!

    March 7, 2012 at 7:41 am | Report abuse |
  5. Suzanne

    Why this child? Why now?

    March 7, 2012 at 7:35 am | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      If you think 19 years old is a child, we better raise the voting age.

      March 7, 2012 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Joanne

    America's strength, and vitality stems from her immigrants contrary, to what some old,sclerotic brains think, and most immigrants work hard, in fact they work a lot harder than many Americans that I work with.
    Daniela is obviously a winner, and I'll say it again more power to her, and her family.

    p.s. Daniela can have my job any day.

    March 7, 2012 at 6:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. joanne

    I think we have too many Todds. If all the immigrants, both legal,and illegal left the U. S., her economy would come to a halt.
    Once again more power to Daniela, and I'll say it again we need more young adults like her.

    March 6, 2012 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      50 million young adults like her are willing to move here tomorrow, are you willing to pay for their education then give them your job when they graduate? Heck no, you won't even pay for Daniela's education or give her your mob. Hypocrit.

      March 7, 2012 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. joanne

    More power to you Daniela, and I think that your spirit is more American than many of the small minded, mean spirited dolts responding to your plight. America needs more young adults like you.

    March 6, 2012 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa,

      Joanne. we have enough already... she is illegal, end of story.

      March 6, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
      • Alec

        Todd, ask any farm director in Georgia or Mississipi whether or not there are tons of citizens banging down his doors begging to do farm work.

        March 6, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Peggy

    America in decline! Just as soon as they let these people stay and let gays married the next thing you know people will be marrying goats!

    March 6, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Heather

    If children are brought in to this country illegally by their parents aren't they crime victims? Shouldn't their parents be prosecuted for that crime while the children victimized receive help? It is an ugly suggestion but if the parents were found guilty of their crime and sentenced and after they have done their time deported, the victims could be naturalized in exchange for helping the prosecution. We are talking about child abuse. It would be fair and legal.

    March 6, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      You are nuts. The kids are more like crime beneficiaries, getting a quality US education and other benefits they normally wouldn't receive.

      March 6, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa,

        shoot they dont want her back. she has not covered all the things she needs to spy on first.

        March 6, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  11. SteveRhoades

    Awarding in state tuition to illegal aliens is fiscally irresponsible and patently unfair.
    Push your state representative to make a change. Google this: NUMBERSUSA .
    Once you are registered, go to the "action board" to send free faxes to your state representative .
    They are all typed up and ready to go, you just need to click your mouse to send.
    Illegal aliens are costing us millions each day.

    March 6, 2012 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  12. SteveRhoades

    These boo-hoo stories simply disgust us and do NOT engender sympathy.
    We have lost all tolerance for their unlawful presence and all the negative things
    that come with it.

    March 6, 2012 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa,

      Steve, have you read the ariticle about how in California protesters were arrested because of Education Cuts?

      March 6, 2012 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
      • SteveRhoades

        Yes.. it's sad.. Illegal Aliens bankrupt California.

        March 6, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • SueEllen

      I know!! Lad these people onto a boat with the Muslims blacks and g@ys and sink that thing in the Atlantic ocean!

      March 6, 2012 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
      • dave

        you need help young lady. If you are ever in need of assistance because you fell in the street or got hit by a car it is a gay black man that shows up to help. & I hope you tell him get away from you...

        March 6, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
      • SueEllen

        Dave I am going to pray for your soul for attacking me in such a way. You probably are a gay black man aren't you? I will weep for you from heaven while you're at your gay disco in hell.

        March 6, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
      • cmp

        Sue Ellen, for a "Christian", you sound unreasonably racist and full of hate. Please reflect on your statements and think about what Jesus, your loving savior, would say to you in regards to your mean, ignorant words.

        "He will answer them, 'I can guarantee this truth: Whatever you failed to do for one of my brothers or sisters, no matter how unimportant [they seemed], you failed to do for me.' Matthew 25:45

        March 6, 2012 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa,

        @cmp. after you see your job taken by illegals, or if you see illegals getting over on the system, you learn that enough is enough. you immigrants from the last 25 years, amnesty given, welfare drainers, non taxpaying puckers need to get the truck out.

        March 6, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jack

    I would rather have my tax dollars go towards her college education than see it frittered away towards cosseting some fool on welfare who pimps around in a Cadillac all day, or towards some born-again backwoods diddler who skims off farm subsidies and hasn't planted a thing in years and keeps a $20,000 bass boat in his barn, or some idiot slacker who drifted through school on a sea of mediocrity, and blames everybody because he can't get his dream job.

    March 6, 2012 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      Well what are you waiting for, send her a check so she can go to college in Colombia!!!

      March 6, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Fellow Latina

    I wonder what the judge would have done if she was white and from Canada..

    March 6, 2012 at 12:52 am | Report abuse |
    • tom

      Being white and from Canada wouldn't make her any more a citizen of the United States. Hence deportation.

      Illegal is not a race. It is a legal status. The person can be of any race.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:02 am | Report abuse |
      • Charlotte

        Agreed Tom! It makes no difference where an immigrant is from...illegal is illegal. While I feel for this girl and her sister, there are legal manuevers that can be taken, and from the sounds of it, she has an attorney. If deportation does happen, she can return to live with her Mother and extended family that I am sure will welcome her home. I rest the blame solely on the parents in this situation, not the government. Our immigration laws are actually very lax compared to Mexico, Canada and even the Virgin Islands. So I suggest everyone go read those laws and have some appreciation for what our country DOES do.

        March 6, 2012 at 9:14 am | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      FellowLatina.. You are Racist.

      March 6, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa,

      she would be deported just as your butt should be.

      March 6, 2012 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
  15. Fellow Latina

    The girl is not at fault, family came to states to make a better life for them. Just like our forefathers did. Oh how some people for get, system should be made to help people become American citizens faster. She should be able to stay and continue her education, which ever college gets her is blessed. Sad that she is one of the many teens having to deal with this.

    March 6, 2012 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
    • tom

      You are right and wrong. It isn't her fault. It is her parents fault. They knew that at any minute the whole family could be deported, but stayed here anyways. She should look to them for explanations why her life is being turned upside down.

      And if your forefathers came here like mine did, they came LEGALLY! She is here illegally. There is a difference.

      March 6, 2012 at 1:00 am | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      Illegal aliens are costing us millions each day. They collect social welfare, take jobs,
      burden schools, get handouts, commit crimes..
      Illegal immigration costs the U.S. more than $130 billion a year.

      March 6, 2012 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
      • Alec

        Actually, by most estimates illegal immigrants are benefits to the economy, for the most part they pay taxes but don't use as many services as citizens.

        March 6, 2012 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      She is over 18, the rest of us consider her an adult and thus responsible. At what age do you think people become adults? 35?

      March 6, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  16. SueEllen

    Just read a news story that this girl is pregnant and trying to have the baby in the USA!!!!!

    March 5, 2012 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chad

      Call planned parenthood and get her an abortion on the way to the airport lol!

      March 5, 2012 at 10:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      You just made that one up, if you dislike Latinos so much, just try and deport ME, I'm Puerto Rican, you deceptive, gossipy little weasel...

      March 6, 2012 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
      • SueEllen

        It's a shame that puerto ricans are allowed to be here legally. I group wm in with all the other brown folks who come to flood our shores and destroy the virtue of our girls an our families. I pray for your people and the corrupt catholic religion that y'all keep. I hope one day you return to your lands and repent and accept the true path to heaven into you hearts.

        March 6, 2012 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
    • S

      Okay, as the valedictorian i think she has enough brains to not get pregnant.

      March 6, 2012 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
      • SueEllen

        Im sure she's the valedictorian of a minority school where most of those thugs and gang bangers don't even bother to show up.

        March 6, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  17. dakota2000

    Note that we do not have native american terrorist blowing up casinos in Las vegas.
    Why? I guess it is because they are peaceful people.

    On the other hand, you have a similar situation in Israel and Hamas was blowing people up right and left.

    Guess which situation gets the most attention. The people that blow themselves up! Is that right? that encourages people to become violent to effect change.

    Indians are not violent people but that does not mean that they should not be respected.

    What I am saying is, we should respect the peaceful nature of Native Peoples and give them more rights before they demand them. Like the right to cross "european" defined boarders in peace.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dduke

      Just got home from work, is this monkey gone yet??

      March 5, 2012 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • John Bowman

        You La Raza plants are so easy to spot.

        March 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      You are hilarious. Native Americans are dis-enrolling (deporting) tribal members from their Nations who cannot prove a certain blood quantum, in order to increase the remaining members gambling proceeds!!! In other words, they are doing the same thing the larger US citizen community is doing, and for the same reasons!!

      March 5, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
  18. tacjam4

    This judge should be applauded! He did hard thing but the correct thing. This girl should be angry with her parents for bringing her into a country that she has no legal bearing to be in. It wasn't her fault but we must not let these illegal children stay in the country. If you do, it's an incentive for every illegal to bring their children here. This was a risk her parents took with her life, she should be bitterly angry for her parents for putting her in this situation.

    March 5, 2012 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  19. tom

    Schools are closing, classrooms are growing, programs are being dropped for our children, but we still welcome wave after wave of illegals that just make the problems worst. We are losing well over $11 billion a year in education costs alone. Not to mention larger classrooms where teachers have less individual time, lowering the quality of education, and many students who can't even speak English because they only speak the native tongue of their country. Teachers and even social workers are not allowed to ask or investigate to see if students are illegal.

    Education is just one area that they cause problems. Hospitals are going broke or charging more because of mothers that can’t pay who have anchor babies. Almost 25% of prison population is either illegal or “nationality unknown”. Most people for illegal immigration say that they cannot receive government benefits, but they do. Benefits meant for American citizens and legal immigrants. Just ask anyone who works in those offices.

    The reality of it is that we cannot help them until at least we help ourselves. And they won’t stop coming until we make some hard decisions and choose to help citizens of the United States and our legal immigrants first.

    March 5, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  20. tom

    Good job, CNN! I have a very important point to make and your "liberal" censorship will not allow me to post it despite it conforming to all the terms of service. That is how you keep the sheep in line, by not allowing logic and reason to be introduced.

    March 5, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      Yep, same censorship happened to my post. Which proves CNN really is the Communist News Network.

      March 5, 2012 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  21. John Bowman

    Notice how the anti-American media falls all over themselves with stories like this about law breaking foreigners, but never writes a story about law abiding foreigners like my Chinese girlfriend's daughter, who was a Valedectorian at her High School and was accepted to USC, but the US government will not give her a student visa to enter the USA. Seems the media prefers foreign criminals over law abiding foreigners.

    March 5, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      About once a month, CNN comes out with some story about the plight of an illegal vs the evil, uncaring, and unfeeling American people.

      Then in other sources, you can read just about everyday how crimes are committed by illegals. And they feel that this is balanced.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
  22. IDEK

    Americans use every little excue to exercise their racism. Imagine if this was an american girl from some hillbilly town in the mid west, that studied in some fancy European University and was about to be deported because they found out she was on an expired visa. US citizen would be raging right now. Fun fact if we're gonna start deporting everyone, might as well start with every white person in USA. Also, mind using the term right? by Definition she is an american...American is anyone born on the american continents. Mind going back to school, inbreds?

    March 5, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      The american girl from some hillbilly town in the mid west does NOT jump over the fence,
      and demand rights.
      They come home before their visa exprires. That's the different Bozo.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stella

      Wow, you must live in a cave. If a US girl was about to be deported from Europe over an expired visa no one would care at all, in fact would think she was at fault.. Up in arms? Maybe on your planet. You are the racist.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      She might be an "American" because she was born in South America, but generally speaking, when the term "American" is used, it is widely accepted that the person is from the United States. She can call herself American, but she is not a citizen of the United States, she is Colombian and by birth, that is where she belongs until another government welcomes her. Something which we (the United States) did not do.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      Illegal alien is not a race, it's a crime. You must think it's about race because you are a racist.

      March 5, 2012 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Sy2502

    "The teen was shocked by the judge's ruling"

    Of course, it's entirely shocking to be held accountable for breaking the law. Who would have thought that could possibly happen?

    March 5, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • papanez

      She was 4 when her parents brought her here. 4. When you were 4 did you have a major say in what actions your parents took? Doofus.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
      • John Bowman

        She is now over 18, do you think she is an adult, or still a child?

        March 5, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Stella

      papanez – still she should blame her parents, who brought her here and never naturalized their status, not the US for enforcing laws. he predicament she's in is the fault of her parents.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  24. cacalips

    I am American, and I live over seas, I know both systems. The Americans should be first applauded for their valuing education enough to keep it in the realm of this ruling. However, they need to understand that sending them back will no harm, but actually HELP their own country! They can return educated, and bilingual. Sending them back does not send them to some kind of war torn country. They came here ILLEGALY. Doing that in Europe has been abused and so many people pull the "Oh look, I stayed here over my VISA but I work...or ...I finished school". Ok, who cares! You commited an illegal move to cheat the system. JUST BECAUSE YOUR SMART or good at commiting this crime, gives NO SPECIAL reservation of citien satus. If that was true, imagine how many chineese would invade USA on the basis of smarts LOL Their math skill alone at high school level would put the entire nation in US. The laws are there for a reason. Stupid fat portorican whatever should have taken Law and learned that her place is back at home, not in America. Also, schools are profeting of this. Schools are becoming nothing but pass throughs of illegal children. MY brother had to go to school with nothing but illegal mexicans, they have no idea what US school is about so they do bad and turn to drugs and violence, this pass through gets them benefits. Also, it keeps school numbers up so the STAFF turn a blind eye to illegals and report to the government "We have 10 million students, please dont close this school". So, STAFF abuses the illegals to get money and illegals beneift by staying in the country. Don't believe me? Ask any one leaving by this border. KICK THEM OUT!

    March 5, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • SueEllen

      Take some blacks and g@ys while she's headed out of the country too!

      March 5, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
      • SteveRhoades

        Ellen.. You are not helping here.

        March 5, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
      • Anthony

        You are spewing hate. We are all human beings and we don't deserve this discrimination!

        March 7, 2012 at 7:34 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa,

        look at California. how did they get into the predicament they are in? Look at Florida, how did they get into the predicament they are in? I am not against immigration. I am against freeloaders. As for taxes. Illegals work for cash. Cash. not pay roll deductions for taxes. yes they pay for gas, food, etc. etc. but when working for cash. they pay no taxes.
        how many kids are born to illegals everyday in the United States? Who pays that hospital bill? not illegals. She has had a free ride since the age of 4. Something that should be looked at is, did her parents go on welfare, food stamps or any other Government sponsered assistance. Our Education system is so full of kids of illegals that its costing the states more to bring in teachers to deal with this outrage. It is costing the U.S. Citizen. not illegals. You say that your being discriminated against. Well, if you was legal, You wouldn't be.
        Illegal immigrants like those in Georiga, Alambama, or Mississippi, work for Cash. if you offed High School kids a decent wage, I am sure you could get kids out there to pick the crops, but because said Farmer is out for his own pocket book, he hires illegals. Who work cheap,
        go to an illegal immigrants resident. How many people liive in that house? around here, When you do this, you see 15-25 people in this house. When you go inside the house. you see no furniture. no chairs, they do have a big flat screen tv. but not a whole lot else. you see sleeping bags on the floor. it's dirty. the cars they drive. Big SUVS. so they can migrate some where else.
        if you support illegal immigration in this time where the economy is at a standstill and in decline. your wrong. Very few hispanic i have met have good will to the United States. they hang their flag above the United States Flag.
        Most teachers won;'t hand out 6.7 grade averages.. so that's a lie. She might be smart. but not smart enough to figure out she's in the United States Illegally.. at least now that shes 18, shes worried about it. Why now? because shes of legal age.
        Etc. etc.

        March 7, 2012 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
    • migeli

      Tell that to the mayor of Los Angeles. I ' m sure he got his job using drugs and violence.After all he's a Hispanic.Wow talk about bigots. There would be no drug gangs or much violence if they legalized drugs as Ron Paul advocates. But noooo–see, most people would rather take the chance of having their kid killed by drug gang well armed from profits on illegal drugs than properly educate their kids not too use them.In the meantime legal drugs readily available in the medicine cabinet are killing ten times more people.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • tom

        If you think that legalizing drugs would make that problem disappear, you are a fool. To legalize drugs would just make it easier to get stoned. It would do nothing to disband the "drug" gangs. They would just take up some other illegal activity.

        March 5, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  25. migeli

    You see what kind of animal we're dealing with here,the guy most adament about deporting this girl.He just posted that she has a face like a flat tire.That's really classy talk and as I said if she looked like Kim Kardashian guys like him would be offering her a place to stay.This is the kind off discompassionte morons who spread this kind of hateful trash.I am not for illegal immigration but this is a wellmeaning girl who liived her whole life here and her parents committed the crime Let her stay and pay her own way and be a productive contributor to the greatest country in the world.And thats why we are.

    March 5, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • SueEllen

      Do illegals deserve compassion?

      March 5, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
      • tom

        Yes, they do. They deserve the full support of the country in which they have citizenship.

        March 5, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      Excuse me.. I said.. Her face looks like a spare tire. Flat tire would look better.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Wondering

      The educational system (tax payers)has paid out alot of money for this young lady. She should be happy and appreciative about that.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  26. migeli

    A perfectionist! grammar and spelling too I suppose.Thats what we really need in this country.I have a toilet brush for you.Come on over. I'm sure you'do a resl good job.Meanwhiie the Chinese are working at real jobs courtesy of your tax cuts and loopholes to the rich which is the real problem here.

    March 5, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Cheyenne

    She should not be allowed to attend any college, both public and private, until all citizens and legal immigrates who have applied to attend the college have been accepted. If there are any vacancies still available she whould be allowed to attend, but without any type of assistance to include in-state tution and all scholarship. Additionally, in these tough economic times and with students graduating with high student loans, she can not participate in work-study unitl every student, citizens and legal immigrates, have had an opportunity to avail themseleves to work-study.

    March 5, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  28. doug

    *is not are. sheesh. no question I was never my class valedictorian ! hahahha

    March 5, 2012 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • migeli

      Sorry, in case your wondering. I was not referring to you.

      March 5, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  29. doug

    The girl has worked hard, no question. We should all be proud of her. If she were not the valedictorian, would this be in the news ? Are she only getting attention because she is smart ? If she were a 'C' student, how might this story be different ?

    March 5, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      You might notice that her sister, who apparently didn't do as well in school, is only passingly mentioned.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
  30. migeli

    This has never been such issue.Prosecute the people who hire them, like you know the wealthy who got the tax cuts and were supposed to create jobs for Ammericans.They hire illegals and outsource all good American jobs. If I was wealthy would anyone of you like to come over and clean my toilet?The weathy are stealing trillions while your discussing deporting one decent kid who spent her whole life here because her parents committed a crime.In that case you should all be deported because The Native America Law of 1492 said so.What a waste of time seeing this kind of hateful garbage displayed by descendents of immigrants.Sick people.Whats the matter?No Kardashians to watch today?If she looked like Kim 90 percent of you guys would be offering her a home

    March 5, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      Yes.. You are right.. Her face looks like a spare tire. And Better if you call a plumber if she
      goes into your bathroom. What a disaster.

      March 5, 2012 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  31. SteveRhoades

    Awarding in state tuition to illegal aliens is fiscally irresponsible and patently unfair.
    Push your state representative to make a change. Google this: NUMBERSUSA .
    Once you are registered, go to the "action board" to send free faxes to your state representative .
    They are all typed up and ready to go, you just need to click your mouse to send.

    March 5, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      No to menton grants and scholarships to illegial "aliens".

      March 5, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bo

      Not to menton grants and scholarships to illegial "aliens".

      March 5, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      No need to use two different nicks to post comments. JoeBo.. Just use one. More practical.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Peggy

    These people are symptomatic of a larger problem. In the past few years I've seen my neighborhood being overrun with these people and blacks and we even have some Muslim neighbors too! I'm worried that my grand kids are going to grow up in a brown America and that these people are dragging my property values down.

    March 5, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • SueEllen

      I don't even want to talk about the kind of people that have been moving into my neighborhood it's enough to make me sick.

      March 5, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
  33. todd in iowa

    your racist. Andy. get a grip. she is here illegally.. your activist groups are failing you. take your dual citizenship and stay right where you are. in Culumbia

    March 5, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      Todd, you can not even spell Colombia

      March 5, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        can you say sarcasim?

        March 5, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        need to put a stop to dual citizenship also.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  34. crabman

    rules are rules see ya

    March 5, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      I'm with you. Meet you on the tennis courts!

      March 5, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  35. Michael

    She has earned her right to stay and become a US citizen!!! Top of her class wants to go into the medical foeld and help who??? Oh that is right American Citizens!!! She will pay taxes in the medical field once she earns her degree as well!!! Let her stay and become a positive US Citizen. Just vbecause you were born here should not give you the right to sit on your ass and let me support you!!! This young lady is a hard worker that will make something of herself if gioven the opportunity!!! I would much rather my tax dollars go to support someone like this than all the lazy welfare collecting drug addicts taht were born in this country!!! This story breaks my heart because this is the second one that i have heard just like this!!! I teach in California and have a former student just graduate att teh top of her class but because of her imigration status she has to attend Community College beacause she can't qualify for student loans, grants, etc. She can't afford to attend the universities that she had recieved acceptance letters for.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      She has earned that right by going through the proper channels, paperwork, and fees like every other Colombian (that is her citizenship)? I think not.

      She has received a gift and should consider herself lucky she wasn't forced to leave earlier. It wouldn't be fair to the other Colombian who have been waiting for years to do it right to be displaced by someone because her parents didn't want to follow the rules.

      Before she is allowed to come back, she should be forced to pay every penny that was put into her education and well being by the American tax payer.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
    • J.C.

      You haven't supported me or any of my ancestors, Michael.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
      • Andy

        I can say the same thing about your ancestors, who did they support when the first got here? I mean, unless they were Native Americans, but I seriously doubted, because your ancestors killed them all!

        March 5, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
      • J.C.

        My ancestors supported themselves. Thanks. 🙂

        March 5, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      She has earned nothing, and along with her parents, stolen everything. But you are welcome to give her your US citizenship and move to Colombia.
      If you are not a US citizen, then just shut up.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Austin

    Ask yourself, what potential immigrant would hesitate to come to America illegally because they might have to pay a fine? It seems to me that the only way to enforce immigration law is to deport people here illegally. I'm not saying our current immigration system is good or bad, but I will say we should enforce it until it changes.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  37. SueEllen

    Send her packing and while we're at it ship off all the gays, blacks, and abortion having women who live in sin!

    March 5, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      ahhhh...I think you just lived in sin. Careful what you wish for. 🙂

      March 5, 2012 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
    • kaden717

      I really hope you're joking, because that comment was the most racist, rude thing I have ever read. Your views are wrong and you shouldn't be allowed to say them.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
      • SueEllen

        My view is righteous and rooted in my faith. We need to wake up and come to our senses because we live in a sinful land. I found out that my son was gay and I had to end my relationship with him because of the path he chose.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
      • Peggy

        I agree with Sue Ellen and I'm happy to see that she had the strength to stand up to her son and his wicked ways.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tiffany

      I am going to guess that you are Christian, and as such shouldn't you be accepting and tolerant of your brothers and sisters, including those of different ethnicities (i.e. "blacks")? That view is definitely not rooted in your faith, as you so said.

      March 5, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
      • SueEllen

        I pray for you Tiffany. You are likely an unwed mother living in sin Who has had multiple abortions or someone engaged in lesbianism.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
      • Tiffany

        No Sue Ellen, I'll pray for YOU so that maybe one day you will realize how bigoted your views are. Your assumptions of me couldn't be farther from the truth.

        March 5, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Andy

    I am Colombian (currently living in COLOMBIA), I am also a naturalized US Citizen. I strongly believe her parents are to blame for bringing her to a foreign country illegally. They have to take some responsibility, they knew the risks involved. You cant expect any rights from a country you entered illegally. However, I feel sorry for her and wish her the best on her future endevours.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa

      dual citizenship? if you was born in columbia, stay in columbia.. intead of coming to the United States to make money and take it where you came from.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
      • Andy

        It spells COLOMBIA. Duel citizenship means you can choose to live in both countries, it does not make me any less of an American. I have friends that are born US CItizens living here also. Learn how to write first, attend college and email me later.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        hey you racist punk its spelled columbia. har

        March 5, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
      • J.C.

        To Andy:

        It's *dual*, not *duel*.

        Es muy facil. lolz

        March 5, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
      • Patrick

        @ Andy
        Yes, it does make you less American.

        March 5, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  39. todd in iowa

    @Warren, my great great grandfather and mother came from norway, did all the necessary things to become American Citizens. i am also part Cherokee. that gives me every little bit of right to be against illegals and the importation of immigrants. i just saw how American manufacting is importing workers while so many Americans are out of work.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      Ahhh...but where did the Cherokee come from? You are assuming they are indigenous to this land and did not migrate from another place. Perhaps they never did move ...ever? Still, your heritage gives you no right to treat others in such a way. If what you tell me is accurate, then your ancestors came here to improve the lives of their family. In that way, how different, truly, are you than those who do the same today. I do agree that law should be unheld equally, however. But, and I hate to say this, illegal immigrants actually carry the very spirit with whcih our parents came here and we have forgotten. We are creating what man of our parents hoped to have left behind. Isn't that a kick in the pants. 🙂

      March 5, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        not really Warren. Immigration back in 1800s was much different then it is today.. Immigration is ruining the very image of what our forefathers gave to us.
        There was no problem finding jobs. There was no problem finding a place to live. There was no need to take advantage of a Government to look for hand outs. Today there is a problem with Immigration. I served in the military, and have served overseas. to hear the people of there talk about the United States, and then to allow them over to this country is not a good idea. illegal immigration has bled our country of resources that only legal citizens should have a hand at.
        how many more illegals are in our schools, that our tax dollars are paying for? how many more illegals are taking their money back to where they came from?
        20 years ago.. any immigrant wanting to come to the United States was known as a defector. now we allow 1 million immigrants a year to come to the United States and take American Jobs.

        Cherokee comes from my moms side.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
      • Madelin

        You are RIGHT. I just read this AM about a river in Donna, TX which is poisoned and has been for years. The migrant workers who live there are HUNGRYand eat fish from the water even though they are told it's poisoned. I'm sure some of these people are illegal, BUT some of them are citizens and legal immigrants. There is NO MONEY to fix the problem. Why? because The Taxpayers Bank of Socilaist Solutions has funded foreigners, other countries, criminals and whole families who have more children than they can support. America just sent FOOD to N Korea. This is an ABOMINATION when our OWN PEOPLE ARE HUNGRY. These citizens and legal res should be GIVEN FOOD until the problem is fixed and I emailed THE White House about this. It's SCARY to think the followup to this scourge will probably be the complete BANNING of Fishing and patrolling by authorities NOT FIXING THE PROBLEM. This is the Boot in the Butt that becomes fascism. Ideals need to be FUNDED. I fear this is one example of the future of America.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andy

      All the necessry things? really, like what? gotten off the boat? back then all you have to do is show up on a boat and that is it. Get a job, loser.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        call me a loser? why don't you use your real name? scrait are you?

        March 5, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
  40. DCLaw

    Could someone please tell me what law allows illegals to swear allegiance to our flag and become members of our military force (thus granting automatic amnesty?!) over and above the tens of thousands of our citizens who have been deemed ineligible? Lily-livered liberals...

    March 5, 2012 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa

      i agree. to allow illegals into the military today is not a good thing. so her brother should be deported also. we are paying for him to spy on the military just as allowing arabs into the military. 20 years ago this was not a problem. but the way society is today, they should not alllowed to serve for citizenship.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      The same one used by the Romans. The big question really is, do we adhere to law or just pick to low hanging fruit of those we wish to use and abuse?

      March 5, 2012 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  41. Mike Jones

    All of you racists will burn in hell one day have fun while your nation is still white in 40 years we will be kicking ya'll out.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      The only ones mentioning race are the liberals and pro illegals. We only mention Colombia because that is where she is from. It isn't racist to point out a person's citizenship.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      Well Mike, it appears you prefer a lawless nation over a law abiding nation. Then again, I suppose if you get to ick and choose the laws you wish to uphold, we do to. Ths could be real fun. Better get a permit to carry or is that against your religion? 🙂

      March 5, 2012 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      Well Mike, it appears you prefer a law-less nation over a law-abiding nation. Then again, I suppose if you get to pick and choose the laws you wish to uphold, we do to. Ths could be real fun. Better get a permit to carry or is that against your religion? 🙂

      March 5, 2012 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
      • Warren

        excuse me, I stutter.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      And here we have Neanderthal Mike who doesn't even realize HE is the racist. And a traitor to boot.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Tom

    I would like to thank CNN for another skin deep investigation. Yes, it is a shame that this brilliant young lady came here illegally, even unwillingly.

    CNN paints the picture that this country is all that she has ever known. She is at the summit of her class. Why would we ever want to send her back to a country that she doesn’t even know now?

    Dig deeper CNN. What I am certain of is that these two girls (Daniela and her sister) have received 12 years of free education with at least a value of $108,000 EACH, for a minimum of $216,000.

    While the rest is speculation, it is most likely a reality.

    Has her family received any kind of government aid such as section 8, food stamps, extracurricular school activities, free/reduced lunches?

    Has her mother and father had jobs that were not “under the table” and not paying taxes because they couldn’t obtain legal jobs?

    Was her family driving a car around without insurance? While it didn’t happen to her, plenty of illegals are involved in accidents that the other driver’s insurance company will not cover.

    Was a family member ever sick and used an emergency room as a doctor’s visit? Who paid for this?

    Did her father have a criminal record in Colombia? Not likely, but this is another reality. Illegals that already have criminal records wandering around unchecked. Crimes are committed by illegals on U.S. citizens on a daily basis. Why is this tolerated? I could easily come up with a list of people we should ask what they think about illegal immigration. But, we couldn’t ask them because they are victims of murder, and some rapped, by illegals.

    The fact is that while here, it is certain that her family has received hundreds of thousands in funds that were meant to help American citizens. And this is just one family. THAT is what CNN doesn’t want you to know.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Warren

      C N N really doesn't care. This is a knee jerk topic and they need to drum up numbers for advertisers. So, just play along – nothing comes of this except advertising dollars and what we write makes as much dfference as what C N N writes- but it is fun.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Kelly

      Tom, you are using facts in what is for most an emotional arguement. No matter what you say, what facts you produce, they will counter with slurs and name calling. They do not care about what is factual, they only care that they win.. Look at Mr. Mike Jones's post above. He gives us no facts, no reasoning, no logical opinion to try an persuade anyone to his cause. He just calls everyone who disagrees with his point of view a "racist."

      March 5, 2012 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  43. Warren

    The best example of a lawless nation is one in which the alleged perpetraitor is looked at first and then a determination is made if the law should be applied. In other words, if the student was a D- student, does that mean the law should be applied as oppossed to a valedictorian? Should only our laws apply to poor people rather than wealthy, black rather than white, average rather than beautiful or talented? That is what the headline implies and if this is the kind of country we wish to live in, then we can all stop using the word 'fair' because that is not what we want. Once we move away from equal treatment under the law, then everyone of us gives up our right to expect it. Instead we stand behind and support the picking and choosing of which laws will be applied against us and not others because of something other than fairness such as color, religion, neighborhood, ability, etc. There are laws that need changing and removing and that is our responsibility to do as a nation and society. To ignore written law, or worse, apply them against those we disagree, and to allow our leaders to do the same is a nation of lawlessness and that is fine too so long as we ALL practice equally.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      I think that it is very strange that this entire article is about Daniela. No mention of her sister that apparently isn't valedictorian material. I guess that the sister doesn't matter since she isn't as gifted. Good job, CNN.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  44. arale norimaki

    there is a difference between Illegal and Legal immigration. All sides of the immigration debate need to recognize that distinction in order to hold productive debate

    Why is this anti-hispanic when it applies to all illegal immigrants? illegal is not a Race. It is Illegal

    March 5, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      Illegals ignore the laws and try to make a race issue when they get caught.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • todd in iowa

      was you given amnesty? for with a name like this your either hispanic or an arab.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
      • Warren

        Todd, not sure what you are getting at becasue your name is not AMERICAN either as mine is not.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
      • Scott

        conjugating the verb "to be" into past simple: i was, you were, he/she was, we were, they were...
        "Was you born ...?" ouch...it's hard to form an argument if you yourself can't even speak Engilsh correctly...

        March 5, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        if i made a comment, that said i was an english major. i would be correct in my conjunctions. but i never professed to be. have i?

        March 5, 2012 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  45. todd in iowa

    makes you wonder how many more illegals are in our schools system.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  46. Flatsguide

    If she's that smart, she should have figured out that she's here illegally, and how to stay here legally. Deport.

    March 5, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  47. cuace

    I only needed to read one line in this article ...
    "Daniela Pelaez, 18, and her sister Dayana came to the United States with their parents from Colombia 14 years ago and never left – overstaying their tourist visas."

    If you don't want to be deported then don't enter this nation illegally. And if you don't want your kids to have to go through it, don't bring them with you and include you in your illegal activity.

    March 5, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  48. OldTech

    What you people are trying to tell me is if she is that smart then she should never have to obey any law. Smart people are better than a US citizen and should be allowed to do as they please, like stealing her education from the United States taxpayers.

    March 5, 2012 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Bermille

      If it were up to a vote, I know who I would want to leave.

      March 5, 2012 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
      • Flatsguide

        It's not, you lose.

        March 5, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • cuace

      That's right OldTech.
      There is only one issue with this situation and all other illegal alien issues .... THEY BROKE THE LAW and never should've been here in the first place. In this case her parents probably thought they found a nice loophole ... enter legally on visas then just stay knowing the government probably wouldn't have the resources (or the guts) to hunt them down and ship them back to Colombia.

      March 5, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  49. SteveRhoades

    Estimated 7 million non-agricultural jobs are held by illegal aliens . (with stolen, or fake ID)
    Jobs that could and should go to Americans. Push your state rep to make a change .
    Google this: NUMBERSUSA .Once you are registered, go to the "action board" to
    send free faxes to your state representative .
    They are all typed up and ready to go, you just need to click your mouse to send.
    No more illegal aliens in payroll jobs !

    March 5, 2012 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Bermille

      Tell that to Alabama.

      March 5, 2012 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
      • SteveRhoades

        First of all.. Bermille.. You don't pay attention. I said, non-agricultural.

        Secon of all.. According to the Pew Hispanic Research Center, only 3% of illegal aliens work in agriculture.
        The Federal government can issue 300.000 H-2B work visas for that.
        But we don't need and want 12 million Illegals here.

        March 5, 2012 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        i like the Alabama law. to bad so sad for the farmers who employed the illegals,, now let them hire the 15- 18 year olds who should be working the fields like i did when i was that age. making $5 an hour to walk beans and detassle corn.

        March 5, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  50. Tntcowboy

    J.C. That is the most ignorant post that I have seen in awhile. Basically your ancestors were thrown out of Europe or decided to leave for a better life!! That is the same thing the two girls want. Yet your ancestors landed on plymouth rock and raped and killed the native inhabitants, and brought in slaves to do the work. Get a life!!

    March 5, 2012 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Bermille

      Also, all you have to do is look to Alabama to see what getting rid of illegals does to local economies.

      March 5, 2012 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
    • OldTech

      What are you brain dead? You can not make a valid argument without resorting to off the wall stupid comments like this.....

      March 5, 2012 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
  51. Melizze

    she really needs to come to Canada where she will actually be treated like a human being. send all the smart kids here and keep all the dumb white people in their nation.

    March 5, 2012 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • SteveRhoades

      Look at the little racist Melizze !! How cute is she !?

      March 5, 2012 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
      • Bermille

        Canada is racially diverse like we are. Learn something.

        March 5, 2012 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • MakeMyOwnDestiny

      Spot on! I think the US should look more often towards so many examples you Canadians have to display as success stories. Immigration for one. It is unbelieveable how easier and much more hassle free the Canadian immigration process is in comparison to the US. And then the list should go on to: health care, geopolitics (and playing world's police), reigious tolerance, etc. I have great admiration for your country. I love the US, but really would like that it was a bit more like Canada in several instances.

      March 5, 2012 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
      • SteveRhoades

        Stricter marriage requirement proposed for immigrants in Canada
        Friday, April 01, 2011

        On Saturday, March 26, 2011, a federal notice published by the Canadian government just
        before the election writ said that this stricter requirement would "send a message that
        Canada is taking a strong stance against marriage fraud, and immigration fraud in general."

        March 5, 2012 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • cuace

      Yes! Send them all to Canada!
      That is one of the best ideas I've heard in a while Melizze.
      Except that if you want to take the smart ones then you have to take all the dumb ones too. You don't just get to pick and choose. Since you seem to think that Canadians are more humane than Americans I'm sure it would be a perfectly good deal to take ALL illegal aliens in the U.S. into your country.
      When do the buses start leaving for your border?

      March 5, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Flatsguide

      It will raise the average IQ of both Canada and the U.s. if she does.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Flatsguide

      It would raise the average IQ of both Canada and the U.S. if she does go there.

      March 5, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Flatsguide

      Melizze, you sound like a racist, are you here legally?

      March 5, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • John Bowman

      Send the Hispanic ones to Spain, the rest to Canada.

      March 5, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  52. J.C.

    I never will understand the train of thought that attempts to validate someone's breaking the law by saying others break the law too.

    I have broken the law by speeding. I didn't realize I was speeding, but I got punished. I am sorry for the girl, but she has to go back. If not, then why do we even have immigration law?

    Plus if she's top of her class, she has been educated enough to realize years ago that she was illegal and could have applied to correct it before now.

    All my foreign ancestry immigrated here the right way. No one else is better than my ancestors, nor anyone's ancestor who worked hard and followed the law to come here.

    March 5, 2012 at 10:13 am | Report abuse |
    • MakeMyOwnDestiny

      I do respect your point about breaking the law and facing consequences. But, shouldn't we be discussing the format and consequences of such law? You claim your ancestors immigrated the right way. So did I. The difference here is that a lot of immigrants in the past entered via Ellis Island, in a process that would not require a pre-screening, pre-registration, waiting in line for months, or years, and decades in a few cases, hundreds or thousands of dollars. All of that only for permanent residency. And then, the battle continues uphill towards citizenship. I finalized my process last November and became a citizen. Took me 10 years. 3 different visas, 5 yeas with a green card, a spotless record on everything, and close to 10,000 dollars. Is this fair? Is this the best way to attract talent? Do you think it is fair to compare the hassles immigration policies put up for the current immigrant with the process most of all Americans ancestors had to go through?

      March 5, 2012 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
      • J.C.

        The format? It is quite simple. If you follow the process, you are a legal resident.

        And, all people poor and rich have had to do the same process. It is non-discriminatory. My grandmother used to tell me that her grandparents from Copenhagen Denmark gave up a lucrative hotel business in the 1830s to come to America. They became common working people. Was that fair they didn't get to remain rich? My ancestors from Germany were poor farmers who worked to come here and farmed for generations here throughout the midwest. Was it fair they had to save for years to come here?

        It's called sacrifice. They wanted the American dream. And, they had to earn it and sacrifice for it. Doing well after you break the law here should not be an instant "pass" to remain.

        This isn't about "attracting talent" either. There is talent here. Plus, we want honest, law-abiding citizens...don't we?

        Also about consequences...let's look at that. What if we more freely let people stay? There's already unemployment between 9 and 10 percent in this country. Do we really need more people? There was even another piece on the CNN site today about how there's not enough factory workers in America...not enough technical people. There's not? I know several people myself who are unemployed, including 3 I.T. professionals.

        Fact is, allowing illegal immigrants to remain after they have knowingly remained in violation of law not only makes conscious infringement of that law validated, but it's a slap in the face to everyone who worked for years...sometimes most of their life...to come to America and have opportunity.

        I feel bad for the girl, but she is smart. She would have been taught about immigration and how it works in this country, and would have known years ago as a teenager and could have done what was right and gone and gotten it fixed. And in Miami, there are plenty of attorneys who work pro bono in helping illegals in her situation who were brought here as babies/small children and didn't have choice.

        March 5, 2012 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
      • todd in iowa

        J.C., they know the risks coming to the United States, but yet fail to recognize it.. they see so many taking advantage. Her family needs deported, sneaking is what a hispanic is good for.

        March 5, 2012 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
      • J.C.

        To Todd in Iowa:

        It's not just hispanics who sneak into America every year. Many people from many different cultures do. Your statement was just silly about them.

        We need to stop illegal immigration as best we can, and we need for those who live in communities where it is prevalent and who have earned their status legally to help to maintain that standard. It's only when people who illegally immigrate know there is no tolerance for people who break our laws and that those of their culture will not protect them...will we stem that sort of illegal activity.

        March 5, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
      • John Bowman

        Do you realize that the US has changed, the world has changed, technology has changed, there are five times more people now than 100 years ago in the days of Ellis Island? If we required immigrants to come here on sailing ships, spend two weeks in quarantine, have a sponsor, eliminate all public benefits and education for them and any children they have, just like in the days of Ellis Island, do you think that would then be fair?

        March 5, 2012 at 2:01 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Brian

    Comparing immigrations law breaking to speeding in a car is like comparing shop lifting to armed bank robbery..

    March 5, 2012 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
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