Question: Boy, oh boy! Did you all open a big can of worms with your one-sided point of view of illegal aliens or what?! Murder is illegal. Stealing is illegal. Some immigrants are illegal. Where do YOU draw the line between legal and illegal?

Sure, they're doing a great job out there with road construction, roofing, etc., but what about the burden they put on the population? Do they pay taxes? What about health or car insurance? Do they support our economy, or is most of their income going back to their homeland to support their families there?

More and more jobs require bilingual employees because most illegals do not speak English. You should be proud of your heritage, but you should also be able to communicate with each other. Is that really too much to ask?

Lily: Well then I guess our job is done, because this column is designed to be a starting point — not a destination — for conversations.

More and more jobs require applicants to be bilingual, not because of the illegal immigrant population, but because of the tremendous number of Spanish-speaking people who live — most of them legally — here.

There are no easy answers to your tough questions. I do agree that immigrants should abide by the law and learn to communicate in English. But that goes for ALL of us citizens, as well.

Catherine: The issue in my mind is not immigration; it's the illegal part. The problem in the United States is that there are laws that have been left unenforced for years. This sends a message that the laws don't mean anything. Immigrants can work to support their families back home, contribute to our economy here and still be wonderfully pleasant people.

But if they are here illegally, they are breaking the law.

The U.S. borders are not open to anyone who wants to cross over when they feel like it. When someone comes to this country as a visitor or to live without proper documentation they aren't citizens, and it is wrong to try to assert their rights as if they were.

Danny: Your questions certainly draw a line in the sand, but both sides can provide plenty of data to support their opinions. The news media take us down that road almost daily.

Learning English empowers immigrants and gives them the best chance to succeed in the U.S. However, the need for bilingual business savvy in this country is not solely the result of illegal immigrants who don't speak English. America is diverse enough that Spanish-speaking U.S. citizens warrant the need. Bilingual business, education or support is a separate issue from immigration — legal or not.

The can of worms is now open because we as Americans have stopped looking the other way on this issue. Laws to manage this type of crisis have existed — and have been ignored — for years. You have to admit that we all have a bit of an addiction to low, low prices and immediate results. We crown it as capitalism, but cheap and quick both have a price. It's time to pay the piper, and this means that all involved need to face the consequences for the choices they've made.


We want your questions! Consejos is a bicultural advice column that focuses on relationships, identity and workplace issues. Contact: consejos dallasnews.com or Consejos, The Dallas Morning News, P.O. Box 655237, Dallas, TX 75265 You can also visit dallasnews.com/consejos to access previous columns and to comment on the Consejos blog. © The Dallas Morning News. Dist. by Universal Press Syndicate